The Universal Sense: How Hearing Shapes the Mind

Seth Horowitz is a neuroscientist & sound designer with a Masters in Psychology and Ph.D. in neuroscience from Brown University.

His 2012 book The Universal Sense: How Hearing Shapes the Mind delves into the world of sound and the effects it has on the human brain. Having received critical acclaim by Publisher’s Weekly and Nature, this book is a must read for anyone with an interest in sound.

Throughout The Universal Sense, research psychologist and sound engineer Seth Horowitz shows how our sense of hearing manipulates the way we think, consume, sleep, and feel.

Starting with the basics of human biology, Horowitz explains the process of human hearing and why we hear what we hear. Following chapters examine how we've learned to manipulate sound into music, commercial jingles, car horns, and modern inventions like cochlear implants, ultrasound scans, and the mosquito ringtone.

Ever wondered why do we often fall asleep on train rides or in the car? Is there really a musical note that can make you sick to your stomach? Why do city folks have trouble sleeping in the country, and vice versa? Why do we shush babies to prevent them from crying?

Alongside answering these questions Horowitz explores how does the human brain know which sounds should startle us, which should engage us, and which should turn us off.

Click here to buy The Universal Sense: How Hearing Shapes the Mind

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