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Recursive design: the Chamber Music Hall in Manchester, by Zaha Hadid Architects, which opened in 2009. Photo by View/Getty

Essay/
Music
Contrapuntal consciousness

The music of Bach is full of suggestive structures of counterpoint and recursion (even if Hofstadter got it quite wrong)

Ilari Kaila

French composer Pierre Boulez in 1976. Photo by Herve Gloaguen/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

Essay/
Music
Musical pleasures

We know music is pleasurable, the question is why? Many answers have been proposed: perhaps none are quite right

Roger Mathew Grant

Photo by Edward Webb/Gallery Stock

Essay/
Mathematics
The chords of the Universe

It’s no surprise that mathematics has influenced music. But did you know that the influence goes both ways?

Eli Maor

Ella Fitzgerald performing at Mister Kelly’s nightclub in Chicago in 1958. Photo by Yale Joel/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty

Essay/
Philosophy of mind
Getting in the groove

Music reminds us that the mind is more than a calculator. We are resonant bodies as much as representing machines

Jenny Judge

Janis Joplin performing at The Fillmore, San Francisco, in 1968. Photo by Paul Fusco/Magnum
Essay/
Music
Music is not for ears

We never just hear music. Our experience of it is saturated in cultural expectations, personal memory and the need to move

Elizabeth Hellmuth Margulis