Psyche Loui, assistant professor of psychology, assistant professor of neuroscience and behavior, recently had a paper, “Effects of Voice on Emotional Arousal,” published in Frontiers in Psychology. Loui is lead author, and co-wrote the paper with Justin Bachorik, Hui C. Li and Gottfried Schlaug of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center/ Harvard Medical School, where Loui worked as an instructor before coming to Wesleyan this year. The study explores the effects of lyrics and the voice on the emotional processing of music and on listeners’ preferences. The researchers found robust effects of vocal content on participants’ perceived arousal, independent of the familiarity of the song. Females were more influenced by vocals than males, and these gender effects were enhanced among older participants.
The study, published online Sept. 7, can be read here.