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Multidimensional scaling of emotional responses to music: The effect of musical expertise and of the duration of the excerpts

Cognition & Emotion
Issue:
Volume 19, Number 8 / December 2005

Pages:
1113 - 1139

URL:
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Multidimensional scaling of emotional responses to music: The effect of musical expertise and of the duration of the excerpts


E. Bigand , S. Vieillard , F. Madurell , J. Marozeau , A. Dacquet

A1 LEAD�CNRS, Université de Bourgogne, Dijon, France
A2 IRCAM�CNRS�Paris, France
A3 LEAD�CNRS, Université de Bourgogne, Dijon and UFR de musicologie, Paris IV�Sorbonne, France
A4 IRCAM�CNRS�Paris, France
A5 UFR de musicologie, Paris IV�Sorbonne, France

Abstract:

Musically trained and untrained listeners were required to listen to 27 musical excerpts and to group those that conveyed a similar emotional meaning (Experiment 1). The groupings were transformed into a matrix of emotional dissimilarity that was analysed through multidimensional scaling methods (MDS). A 3�dimensional space was found to provide a good fit of the data, with arousal and emotional valence as the primary dimensions. Experiments 2 and 3 confirmed the consistency of this 3�dimensional space using excerpts of only 1 second duration. The overall findings indicate that emotional responses to music are very stable within and between participants, and are weakly influenced by musical expertise and excerpt duration. These findings are discussed in light of a cognitive account of musical emotion.