TED Conversations

Pabitra Mukhopadhyay

TEDCRED 50+

This conversation is closed. Start a new conversation
or join one »

Maths came before music

The moment consciousness can differentiate many from one, it becomes fundamentally mathematically endowed. This is the precursor of axiomatic tautology of mathematics that can, given enough combinations, get as complex as you can imagine.
Mathematical skill therefore should predate musical skill in human evolution.

+2
Share:

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • Comment deleted

    • thumb
      Jun 29 2013: "So it is possible music came before mathematics and mathematics developed out of music."
      Before or After?
      • Comment deleted

        • thumb
          Jun 30 2013: Just like we are looking for the earliest history and origin of music in human evolution, there should be one for math too, don't you think? What should that be? How do you think mathematical abilities grow in human beings?
          My idea should encourage one to think rationally about that.
      • Comment deleted

        • thumb
          Jun 30 2013: That ability is called numerosity and it is present in higher primates. Some grey parrots can count too.
          I believe that there is a biological basis of mathematics (not the higher and highly abstract branches but number sense and ordinal numerical ability). You can imagine all kinds of survival scenarios where this trait could be naturally selected over others.
          The book 'The nature of mathematical thinking' by Robert J. Sternberg looks promising for this inquiry.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.