music-emotion2As you know if you’ve been reading this blog I’ve long been interested in the expressive potential of music and wine, especially regarding the expression of emotion. Because everyone knows that music is especially good at expressing emotion, explaining how it does so appears to be the more straightforward task since many people would deny that wine could express emotion at all. If we’re going to make progress on the wine/emotion question we will have solve the music/emotion question first.

It turns out that it is not so easy to explain how music expresses emotion. Philosophers have not come to any agreement about the issue. But I think I’ve found the key to both music and wine and their expressive possibilities. In my 3 Quarks column this month I show how the psychological concept of vitality forms answers the question of how music expresses emotion. I will tackle wine and emotion next month if and when I get it sorted out.