Music in Utero The Smiling Unborn Child
In 1984, a video called The Silent Scream helped change the way people think about the unborn child. The footage of an actual abortion and the fetus’s reaction reminded us that abortion involves the death of a real person.
A recent bit of footage has similar potential, only it couldn’t be more different from The Silent Scream.
The footage was part of a recent PBS special, The Music Instinct: Science & Song. The program was an exploration of, among other things, music’s “biological, emotional and psychological impact on humans.”
Part of this “exploration” included how music affects babies. If we are, as some scientists believe, “wired for music,” then babies are ideal test subjects since their reactions are, by definition, instinctual.
Part of this research involved the effect of music on fetuses. While we knew that mothers often sing to their unborn children, we weren’t sure that the unborn child could hear them.
We are now.