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Keywords:

  • Evolutionary theories of music;
  • Music industry;
  • Evolutionary origin of language;
  • Music and social bonding;
  • Oxytocin;
  • Mood regulation

Abstract: In contemplating the function and origin of music, a number of scholars have considered whether music might be an evolutionary adaptation. This article reviews the basic arguments related to evolutionary claims for music. Although evolutionary theories about music remain wholly speculative, musical behaviors satisfy a number of basic conditions, which suggests that there is indeed merit in pursuing possible evolutionary accounts.