Music alleviates collective grief – News Azi


In February 2020, a group of musicians from around the world living in China recorded a cover of a Michael Jackson song on video to express their support for families and frontline workers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic . The video went viral. Now, in a study conducted by the Department of Psychiatry and Forensic Medicine and the Institut de Neurosciences (INC-UAB) at UAB, researchers analyze why the video and song had such a profound impact.

In early 2020, the SARS-CoV-2 virus seemed a distant problem for most countries. Nevertheless, this virus was becoming an epidemic in China and its population was going through a very difficult period. It was then that a group of musicians working for the company Shenzhen Meifia Culture Communication Co., Ltd. in Shenzhen, China, used the profile of the Shenzhen Daily newspaper on WeChat to upload a video with 1.2 billion monthly active users. was a social network. With his cover of “You’re Not Alone” by Michael Jackson. The video focuses on overcoming isolation and great obstacles, while also aiming to encourage the people of their second home, China, by sending a message of positivity and hope.

Now, in a study published in the journal Applied scienceLydia Giménez-Llort, professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Forensic Medicine and researcher at INC-UAB, analyzes how the music, lyrics and images in videos combine to show empathy and transmit a message of support to the citizens of Wuhan . A way that shakes the audience. “When I saw the video I felt deeply moved. I connected with the suffering of people and musicians in China, their expressions and the striking images of hospitals, ambulances and empty streets,” says Dr. Gimenez-Lort.

Collective mourning is an expression of the maturity, harmony and respect that exists within a society. The aim of this study was to identify the specific traits that correlate so well with those experiencing individual and collective grief, the sense of understanding of others, and to evaluate personal and social resilience tools. Briefly, to understand how the elements involved in the video recording of the song underpin the collective traumatic experience.

Positive psychology, music, and songwriting are non-pharmacological strategies that can be very important in regulating emotions and thoughts, especially in moments of sadness and difficulties. “He made a cover of a ballad, a type of romantic song that asks a question in one verse and answers it in the next. And out of all the ballads, he chose “You’re Not Alone”, which is someone who describes the understanding of someone who has lost a loved one and who feels the unbearable weight of solitude as the days go by, despite being surrounded by people. Therefore, there is a huge gap between the original song and the situation in Wuhan. The analogy is, a city that stood alone as it faced an outbreak of epidemics while the rest of the world closed its borders and could do little more from afar. But its core value lies in the fact that China The for edition redefines this emotional suffering on a societal level and responds with it that points to several elements of social strength and resilience. And this is done through the voices of foreigners who feel that China is their adoptive country, and this includes the participation of Chinese children as an element of purity and hope for the future. And, the person listening to the song senses the understanding of others and feels that not only do they have external support, but they are also very strong internally and collectively, they are not alone,” says Dr Jiménez-Lort. At the same time, the video plays with changes in rhythm (different angles, length of shots, etc.) and non-verbal communication to reinforce the empathy with which the situation is described and convey a message of support.

With regard to song, the researcher was able to identify elements of specific grieving processes, such as the five phases described by Kubler-Ross (denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance), the dual process model (switching) loss and loss by Strobe and Schutt. back and forth between restorations), Bronfenbrenner’s bioecological model of human development (reconstructing individual experiences into social experiences), and Taylor’s friend-to-friend model (which describes how women within a social structure has to cope with problems or moments of stress (and long-term social support and attention).

Finally, the study also analyzes other concerts happening around the world and songs memorable during the pandemic that played a key role in creating social cohesion during moments of self-isolation and mourning. This study demonstrates the role of music and other art forms in helping us deal with sudden and dramatic situations, both individually and collectively, through our emotional and social minds, thereby reducing physical distance and human suffering. can go, and reach beyond any cultural barriers.

The study is included in a special issue dedicated to “New Psychological Perspectives on Death and Death – Between Normality and the COVID-19 Emergency”, edited by Associate Professor Dr. Ines Testoni, in his “The End of Death Studies”. Internationally known for “Life”. Programs at the University of Padua, Italy and the University of Haifa, Israel.

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