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Why does music have such a powerful effect on our minds and bodies? It is the most mysterious and most intangible of all forms of art. Yet, Anthony Storr believes, music today is a deeply significant experience for a greater number of people than ever before. In this challenging book, he explores why this should be so. Drawing on a wide variety of opinions, Storr argues that the patterns of music make sense of our inner experience, giving both structure and coherence to our feelings and emotions. It is because music possesses this capacity to restore our sense of personal wholeness in a culture which requires us to separate rational thought from feelings, that many people find it so life-enhancing.

“Anyone who feels like reflecting about the origins, the impact and the significance of music will find Dr Storr’s book helpful and stimulating.”

“This beautifully written book, humane, intelligent and thoughtful, is a significant contribution to our understanding of those mysterious movements of the mind.”
ADAM LIVELY, ‘Times Educational Supplement’

“It is stimulating inquiry aimed at discovering what it is about music that so profoundly moves so many people, in the course of which he describes the physical effects of mescaline, considers the relation of bird-song, the burbling of babies and the language of literature to music, and touches on many other fascinating topics, concluding that its most significant aspect for us is its power to create order out of chaos.”

“Reading Storr’s work is always like being taken on a journey through a foreign country by a great enthusiast. It doesn’t matter if you don’t know the language because he teaches you what you need to know along the way. His knowledge is vast and his enthusiasm infectious…Storr is an extraordinarily gifted communicator.”
MARY LOUDON, ‘New Statesman & Society’

Anthony Storr
Harper Collins Publishers
0 201-861867