Sunday, March 9, 2014

Sad, If True

Some people lack the ability to get pleasure from music, researchers say, even though they enjoy food, sex and other great joys in life.

Psychologists at the University of Barcelona stumbled upon this while they were screening participants for a study by using responses to music to gauge emotion. They were surprised to find that music wasn't important at all to about 5 percent of the people — they said they didn't bob up and down to tunes they liked, didn't get weepy, didn't get chills. It was like they couldn't feel the music at all.

"The first surprise is that some of the participants had trouble bringing music from home," says Josep Marco-Pallares, an associate professor of psychology at the University of Barcelona and senior author of the study. These people didn't have any music — no MP3s, no CDs. No Spotify or Pandora.

Then the 30 volunteers were asked to listen to tunes judged pleasurable by other college students, ranging from Puccini's "Nessun dorma" to Simon & Garfunkel's "Bridge over Troubled Water." The scientists measured participants' heart rate and skin conductance, which are considered physiological measures of emotion.

The people who had said they got no pleasure from music showed no physical response, while the music lovers did. "The other participants reported chills when listening to music," Marco-Pallares told Shots. "With our anhedonic group, they had no chills. They had no real response to music."
It's a bit like being color-blind I guess; you can't even know what your missing.

I have trouble believing it.

Wombat-socho cranked out two weeks worth of Rule 5 links on plain Jane "Rule 5 Monday."

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