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Empathy, the song and the singer: a legacy of Robert Schumann

  • John Cox
Summary

In this article it is suggested that empathy is a core component of musical appreciation and particularly of the relationship between the singer and the audience. The brain pathways activated in musical appreciation are outlined and the nature of the empathic process considered with reference to Robert Schumann's songs and his experience of severe mental disorder. The article suggests that listening to Schumann's song cycle Dichterliebe (Poet's Love), or to other great music, is a useful component of continuing professional development and that such experience enhances therapeutic effectiveness and empathy, as well as increasing the understanding of the relationship between creativity and mental health.

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Copyright
Corresponding author
Professor John Cox, Centre for the Study of Faith, Science and Values in Health Care, Francis Close Hall, University of Gloucestershire, St Paul's Road, Cheltenham, GL50 4AZ, UK. Email: john1.cox@virgin.net
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Declaration of Interest

None.

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References
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BJPsych Advances
  • ISSN: 1355-5146
  • EISSN: 1472-1481
  • URL: /core/journals/bjpsych-advances
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Empathy, the song and the singer: a legacy of Robert Schumann

  • John Cox
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