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TOK presentation on music and math
Transcript of TOK presentation on music and math
REAL LIFE SITUATION
TO WHAT EXTENT CAN MATHEMATICS BE USED TO UNDERSTAND MUSIC?
Bach's music has often been claimed to be very mathematical
Can also be seen in other pieces of music
OWN REAL LIFE EXPERIENCE: Bach's first Solo Violin Partita is all about rhythms and is just a mess without a huge amount of counting
Music can be claimed to be closer to the pure truth than other "clearer" arts such as paintings and literature
So is math's - it is a simple, but pure truth that might seem complicated sometimes
Without mathematics music would be just a bunch of tones without any organization and therefore most probably wouldn't exist
Mathematics is one of the main building parts of music
Basically the theory of music is based on mathematics
By mathematical methods we can define rhythm, intervals (=the difference between different tones), tempo and key
It is an important tool in the job of all kinds of musical artists: composers, musicians, conductors...
YES: it can help us understand:
greater wholes and phrases
NO: it can't help us (completely) understand
the deeper emotions and meanings of a musical piece
LIMITATIONS OF MATHEMATICS WHEN UNDERSTANDING MUSIC
Emotion, sense perception and reasoning
Mathematics = clear, precise
Music is NOT always clear, precise
Music should always have a deeper meaning, mathematics can not help with this
BACK TO THE REAL LIFE
Mathematics is basically based on reasoning
Music have links to reasoning
Human awareness of things through our five senses (sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell).
Consists of sensation (sense organs) and interpretation (the brain; our mind)
One of the main aims of music is to provoke feelings and emotions
INTUITION: ability to sense or know immediately without conscious processing
a huge part of music is connected to mathematics
BUT it is not everything
it can not create emotions
Music is an art form that can be presented in numerous, possibly uncountable ways, but the logic and basis of theory (intervals, harmonies, rhythm, structure) can be explained mathematically.
THE ADVANTAGES OF MATHEMATICS WHEN UNDERSTANDING MUSIC
Perfection is often viewed as beauty
Mathematics is one of the many ways that allows to create musical perfection