What We Are Reading Today: Music by the Numbers - From Pythagoras to Schoenberg

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Updated 18 March 2020

What We Are Reading Today: Music by the Numbers - From Pythagoras to Schoenberg

Author: Eli Maor

Music is filled with mathematical elements. The works of Bach are often said to possess a math-like logic, and Arnold Schoenberg, Iannis Xenakis, and Karlheinz Stockhausen wrote music explicitly based on mathematical principles.
Yet Eli Maor argues that it is music that has had the greater influence on mathematics, not the other way around. Starting with Pythagoras, proceeding through Schoenberg, and bringing the story up to the present with contemporary string theory, Music by the Numbers tells a fascinating story of composers, scientists, inventors, and eccentrics who have played a role in the age-old relationship between music, mathematics, and the physical sciences.
Weaving compelling stories of historical episodes with Maor’s personal reflections as a mathematician and lover of classical music, this book will delight anyone who loves math and music.


What We Are Reading Today: Our Minds, Our Selves: A Brief History of Psychology

Updated 30 March 2020

What We Are Reading Today: Our Minds, Our Selves: A Brief History of Psychology

Author: Keith Oatley

In Our Minds, Our Selves, distinguished psychologist and writer Keith Oatley provides an engaging, original, and authoritative history of modern psychology told through the stories of its most important breakthroughs and the men and women who made them.
The book traverses a fascinating terrain: conscious and unconscious knowledge, brain physiology, emotion, mental development, language, memory, mental illness, creativity, human cooperation, and much more.
Biographical sketches illuminate the thinkers behind key insights: Historical figures such as Darwin, Piaget, Skinner, and Turing; leading contemporaries such as Michael Tomasello and Tania Singer; and influential people from other fields, including Margaret Mead, Noam Chomsky, and Jane Goodall. Enhancing our understanding of ourselves and others, psychology holds the potential to create a better world. Our Minds, Our Selves tells the story of this most important of sciences in a new and appealing way.