Abstract

Archaeologists have pored over countless texts of the ancient civilizations, attempting to piece together bygone worlds. However, relatively little work has been done to reconstruct the musical history of these societies, and even less on why their musical histories are important. This paper aims at a synthesis between the ancient Egyptian and classical Greek archaeological records to analyze the importance of music in Paleolithic human cognitive development. Countless musical instruments have been discovered globally, ranging from pre-Columbian bone flutes in Oaxaca, Mexico to ancient trumpets in Egyptian burials (Barber et al 2009). Apart from their place in a museum, minimal work has been done to ascertain their importance to human society as a whole. This thesis attempts to display the crucial need for more research in this field. The recent decline in support for arts education in favor of 'hard sciences' and mathematics is deeply disturbing; the history of humanity should be important not only to anthropologists and historians, but to members of all disciplines. This lack of interest in 'soft sciences' and the arts may lead to a complete loss of ancient musical history; a loss that would be devastating to history, anthropology and the worlds. The contents of this paper portray both the ancient importance of music, and how it contributed to increased cognitive faculties during hominid development.

Notes

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Thesis Completion

2012

Semester

Spring

Advisor

Walker, John H.

Degree

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)

College

College of Sciences

Degree Program

Anthropology

Subjects

Dissertations, Academic -- Sciences;Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic

Format

PDF

Identifier

CFH0004182

Language

English

Access Status

Open Access

Length of Campus-only Access

None

Document Type

Honors in the Major Thesis

Included in

Anthropology Commons

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