This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Power Of Music Essay

2748 words - 11 pages

“Music is the universal language of mankind” (Longfellow, When most people think about music they think of it as a subtle art. It is something that most people take for granted in their lives. It is fun to sing along to a song in the car, or to dance along at a party, etc... It is also a background noise in movies, or parties, or a variety of other places. Most people never stop and think about the transformative power that music can have on them. It should be made clear though that music does indeed have a transformative power. When a person is feeling depressed an upbeat song can lift their spirits up. The same is true for the opposite effect as well. If someone is feeling up, a sad and morose song can bring them back down. This is just a small part of the power that music has over our lives though. As the quote points out, music is a universal language. It is something that people of all ages, religions, genders, and ethnicity can understand and enjoy. This is what truly makes music a powerful force in our world.
What happens though when authors choose to put this power in their writing, though? What kind of similar messages and questions about music are raised in pieces from The Romantic Period and the Modern Era? While there may not seem like there is much in common from two eras hundreds of years apart, there are indeed some similar themes in the poems and stories from these two time frames. The most prominent of these themes is the theme of change, and how you can achieve it through music. It is not something that can be obtained by merely being around music. It is something that can only happen when you truly listen to the music around you.
First, let us listen to the Romantic Period and the pieces we find there. We will begin with William Wordsworth’s poem, Lines written a few miles above Tintern Abbey. While there are several interesting lines in this poem the lines that will be our focus are:
 For I have learned
To look on nature, not as in the hour
Of thoughtless youth, but hearing oftentimes
The still, sad music of humanity,
Not harsh nor grating, though of ample power
To chasten and subdue. (Wordsworth 89-94)
There are several questions about these lines that need to be answered before we can begin to make sense of what the author was trying to convey in these lines. First, it is prudent to understand what exactly the author means when he is talking about humanity. If one were to just use their own common sense, they would probably come to the conclusion that the author is talking about the general human nature of mankind. If one were to take this definition as the correct use of the word in the poem then the line could read as “The still, sad music of human nature”. While this reworking of the line clears up some questions, other questions remain. What exactly is the “still, sad music of human nature”? What exactly is Wordsworth talking about here? While there are certainly a great many...

Find Another Essay On The Power of Music

The Healing Power of Music Essay

1537 words - 6 pages healing power (Podolsky). It gained resurgence during World Wars I and II, when volunteers played instruments and sang for wounded soldiers in hospitals. Music is integral to our culture and emotional health. Barbara Crowe, president of National Association for Music Therapy stated, "Music therapy can make the difference between withdrawal and awareness, between isolation and interaction, between chronic pain and comfort.” More research is clearly

Power Of Music Essay

2204 words - 9 pages The Power of Music Listening to music can bring one peace and harmony an escape from the world around them. Beginning in early childhood people are taught the importance of music as a tool. Some have taken it to a new level taking the world of music and using it to heal. Music Therapy is a practice that uses music techniques to assist and motivate a child or adult towards specific non-musical goals such as cognitive, social, communicative and

The Power of Music to Reduce Stress by Jane Collingwood

1647 words - 7 pages feeling. Listening to music makes humans feel emotion and that is what we thrive on. Music has the tendency to impact an individuals mood and behavior. People can benefit by acknowledging how music makes them feel and using it to their advantage. When feeling stressed people can use music as a means of escape. Music helps distract people from pain and elevates mood (Jabr). In Jane Collingwood’s article The Power of Music to Reduce Stress it

Jamaican Patois and the Power of Language in Reggae Music

4923 words - 20 pages Jamaican Patois and the Power of Language in Reggae Music Introduction Creole languages are found all over the world on every continent. When two or more languages come into contact to form a new language a Creole language is born. Some type of human "upheaval" that forces people to find a way to communicate, without using their own languages, stimulates the creation of a Creole language. In the case of Creole languages in the Caribbean

Music - The Power of Free-styling in Rap Culture

1797 words - 7 pages The Power of Free-styling in Rap Culture For any avid consumer of hip-hop music, the timeless question of how to judge rapping skills is often brought up. Just as sports fans argue over who are the best players, rap fans argue over who is the best rapper. Instead of comparing touchdowns or homeruns, songs and verses are compared. The two major ways of judging someone's rapping ability are the free style rap and the written rap

The Power of Music in Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis and James Baldwin’s Sonny’s Blues

663 words - 3 pages Music has the power to affect people in great ways. It can heal broken hearts, provide and escape from reality, and speak where words cannot. Both The Metamorphosis and “Sonny’s Blues” uses music to help the main character in life. In these pieces of work, music connects both Gregor and Sonny back to humanity and open windows that were previously closed. Gregor, the main character of The Metamorphosis, not only woke up realizing that he wasn’t

The Power of Power

838 words - 4 pages atmosphere, incorporating diabolical elements into this world with the appearance of Hecate, witches, prophecies and ghostly apparitions. Throughout his story, Macbeth becomes controlled by desire for power, by allowing himself to be influenced, using evil means to gain and maintain power to the point that Macbeth is blinded to all else. In Macbeth, Shakespeare vividly demonstrates a recognizable theme of the weighty pull that power holds over those with

The Power of Power

1066 words - 5 pages Abraham Lincoln’s quote shows his thoughts on the power of power and its ability to corrupt even the best of men. The same opinion is shared by Philip Zimbardo, the psychologist responsible for the Stanford prison study. In his study, he observed the effect of power on college students in roles as prison guards and prisoners. The experiment had to be cut short due the effect the power had on the students in the the role of the guards. William

The Neuroscience of Music

1461 words - 6 pages has the power to influence our brain, it has the power to sometimes control it, and even alter it. One aspect of this is the way music effects movement. Almost immediately preceding the triggers in our brain’s memory systems, activity begins in a more well-known area: the cerebellum (Thompson), which controls a person’s fine motor skills and coordinated body movement. Results of this reaction have been observed to go as far as causing our brain to

The History of Music

1959 words - 8 pages however Beethoven was also known as a romantic composer also as his music transitioned to the romantic period.1815-1910 saw the Romantic period. In this period composers would write music to please them.It was for personal satisfaction. Some of the music written at this time was very nationalistic and represented the composers love for their country.The invention of electricity and power was the key to 20th century music- also known as contempery

The Benefits of Music

1129 words - 5 pages The Benefits of Music Think back on a time when you experienced something stressful. How did you cope with it? Recall a time when you needed to relax. What did you use to help you? Chances are your answers involve music. The desire to play music while working, studying, or even relaxing is universal. Whether playing the music, singing along, or just listening, music can have many positive effects that aren’t often recognized. Music is unique

Similar Essays

The Power Of Music Essay

1890 words - 8 pages Many American schools have been cutting their budgets, and music classes are one of the first classes to be cut. This is because music is not considered part of the core curriculum as are classes such as English and math. Music classes are being cut despite their proven mental benefits in areas such as language and mathematics. Music classes should not be getting cut from public schools and the benefits of playing a musical instrument should be

The Power Of Music Therapy Essay

1778 words - 7 pages fundamentally rhythmic nature” (Reiser 2006). For whatever reason, the brain responds to rhythm and studies have shown it to be truly helpful to patients of many types. “Music is found to be therapeutic and used sometimes in treating learning disabilities, as also in diseases such as dementia” (Krishnakumar 2004). The use of music in therapy goes far back in history. “Indigenous cultures have tapped into the spiritual and communicative power of

The Healing Power Of Music Essay

982 words - 4 pages health, but it can also improve your test scores. Campbell refers to a study conducted in which, after listening to ten minutes of mozart, thirty-six undergraduates scored “eight to nine points higher on [an] IQ test” (1). Campbell states that classical music, specifically by Mozart, has the ability to “improve your concentration”(1). This boost of brain power is credited to the complex, harmonic, and organized symphonies of classical music

The Healing Power Of Music Essay

3133 words - 13 pages help increase their memory? Music has a greater impact on human lives than we think; it assists in releasing or creating strong emotions, strengthens the brain increasing the ability to learn, and has the power to heal. Music has a larger affect on feelings and emotions than most people realize. It is an automatic response for the human body to react to music in certain ways. Miller explains that “By the age of five, almost all healthy