Saturday, October 8, 2011

Review: Musical Cognition by Henkjan Honing

Musical Cognition: A Science of Listening is a short, concise book for popular readers that describes University of Amsterdam professor Henkjan Honing's particular views of music. This review is of the 2011 English translation recently published by Transaction Publishers.

With only 160 brief pages, this is a relatively quick read. The book is more like a long pamphlet introducing basic ideas but not getting deep. The writing style is very accessible and clean, with no technical jargon, notation, or traditional music theory. The 15 short chapters have clear internal breaks and section headings, so it is very easy to digest this in tiny chunks, which is something I appreciate in any book, whether popular or technical.