Mind Science


Two Dimensional Description And Visualisation Of Expressed Emotions In Music By Modelling As A Communication System

Authors: Sai Venkatesh Balasubramanian

Any given musical composition can be precisely analyzed for its emotional impact. This invention systematically categorizes all kinds of music on a valence - arousal plane (explained below) using a probabilistic approach akin to communication systems. All music - irrespective of region, lyrics and culture - is identified as evoking a certain combination of emotions that can be precisely quantified and located on the valence-arousal plane. A detailed questionnaire is designed to validate the assumptions and predictions of the theoretical approach. A sample set of 79 individuals who were given the questionnaire were asked to adopt a rating scale to quantitatively assess the impact of each musical piece. Analysis of the data so gathered lends excellent support of the estimated impact (from theory) of any given musical composition. We all know that music of any kind or culture evokes/inspires/stimulates to a large extent an emotional response that is very specific to the stimulus. To start with, classical Carnati Indian music is considered in all its flavor. The fundamental claim is that every note (swara) evokes a corresponding emotional response independent of the specific position in the melody (raga). We consider the collective emotional impact of the fundamental 16 notes of an octave. Of these four notes termed dissonant notes (vivadis) also play a decisive role although only 12 notes are known to be 'fundamental'. One of the most common frameworks in the emotions field proposes that affective experiences are best characterized by two main dimensions: arousal and valence. The dimension of valence ranges from highly positive to highly negative, whereas the dimension of arousal ranges from calming or soothing to exciting or agitating. The product of the analysis is a mapping of all the ragas - for that matter any kind of music - onto an 2-D (valence vs. arousal) plane, is enclosed.

Comments: 14 Pages.

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Submission history

[v1] 2016-01-11 09:56:20

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