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Modularity in Musical and Linguistic Syntax Processing


Welcome to this neuroscience study on modularity in musical and linguistic syntax processing.

When listening to both music and language, we try to make sense of the individual sounds by integrating them in a larger context. This can be a sentence ending with a dot, or a musical chord progression, traditionally ending on the tonic, which gives that feeling of coming home at the end of a song. This integrating takes place according to the rules of syntax, which is a sort of grammar. Neuroscience research suggests there is one dedicated network (or module) responsible for the processing of both music and linguistic syntax. However, there is little understanding if major exposure to music results in different processing of music syntax. If so, this would suggest that neuro plasticity can take place in the syntax module as a result of experience, and should not be conceived as a static network similar for everyone.