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The Child as MusicianA handbook of musical development$
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Gary E. McPherson

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198744443

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198744443.001.0001

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How and why do musical preferences change in childhood and adolescence?

How and why do musical preferences change in childhood and adolescence?

(p.303) Chapter 16 How and why do musical preferences change in childhood and adolescence?
The Child as Musician

David J. Hargreaves

Adrian C. North

Mark Tarrant

Oxford University Press

This chapter identifies patterns in the development of musical preferences, and tries to explain why they occur. Following some definitions of the various terms concerning musical preferences, and a brief description of their grounding in our own reciprocal-feedback model of musical preference, the chapter identifies and review four approaches to this topic. Two of these represent distinctive theoretical models, namely those of experimental aesthetics (which raises the issues of the arousal potential and prototypicality of musical events) and social identity theory (which involves discussion of the role of music in group formation and the reduction of intergroup conflict). The other two approaches are primarily driven by research methodologies, namely developmental approaches (both qualitative and quantitative), which raise the question of age-related developmental stages and “open-earedness,” and neuroscientific approaches, which involve the question of the identification of the neural basis of the distinction between cognitive and affective responses to music.

Keywords:   musical preference, development, aesthetics, neuroscience, open-earedness, cognitive, affective

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