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Aniruddh Patel

Class of 1987-1988

About Aniruddh

(updated 2019) Aniruddh (Ani) Patel is a Professor of Psychology at Tufts University. After attending the University of Virginia as a Jefferson Scholar, he received a Ph.D. in organismic and evolutionary biology from Harvard University in 1996. He then joined The Neurosciences Institute in San Diego, CA, led by Nobel Laureate Gerald M. Edelman, where he was appointed the Esther J. Burnham Senior Fellow in 2005 and remained until 2012. Patel’s work focuses on music cognition: the mental processes involved in making, perceiving, and responding to music. Areas of emphasis include music-language relations, rhythmic processing, and cross-species studies of music cognition. A wide variety of methods are used in this research, including brain imaging, behavioral experiments, theoretical analyses, acoustic research, and comparative studies with nonhuman animals. He has published over 50 research articles and a scholarly book, Music, Language, and the Brain (2008, Oxford Univ. Press), which was called “a major synthesis” by Oliver Sacks and “an intellectual tour de force” by the journal Nature, and which won a Deems Taylor Award from ASCAP (the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers). He has served as President for the Society for Music Perception and Cognition (2009-2011). He frequently communicates music cognition research to general audience, including a 2015 set of 18 lectures titled Music and the Brain, released in 2015 for The Great Courses. In 2009 he received the Music Has Power Award from the Institute for Music and Neurologic Function in New York City, and in 2016 he was appointed a Senior Fellow in the Azrieli Program in Brain, Mind, and Consciousness by the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR).

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