Dr Liila Taruffi
Honorary Research Fellow
|Honorary Research Fellow in the Department of Music|
Liila Taruffi is Lecturer in Music Psychology and Musicology in the Department of Music of Durham University. For her undergraduate and Masters degrees, Liila studied Theoretical Philosophy and Aesthetics at the University of Florence (Italy). She then obtained an MSc in Music, Mind & Brain (Music Psychology) from Goldsmiths, University of London (UK), and a PhD in Psychology and Neuroscience of Music from the Free University of Berlin (Germany), where she was affiliated with the Cluster of Excellence “Languages of Emotion”. Her doctoral work examined emotional and cognitive experiences evoked by sad-sounding music, addressing the supposed paradox of why people deliberately choose to listen to sad music given that sadness is inherently a negative emotion usually avoided in everyday life. Before joining Durham University, Liila was a Postdoctoral HONORS Fellow in the Health Psychology Division of the Free University of Berlin, working on a mobile experience sampling project about the relationship between music, thought, and well-being.
Liila’s research is placed at the intersection of psychology, neuroscience, and aesthetics. She investigates music’s capability to evoke emotions and moods and to influence a specific type of thoughts and visual mental images referred to as “mind-wandering”. Ultimately, her research is driven by the goal of practical applications of music to help maximize the beneficial outcome of mind-wandering and overcome its detrimental aspects. Other research interests range over visual mental imagery, empathic responses to music, creativity, music & well-being, and alexithymia. Liila uses the tools of affective and cognitive psychology as well as neuroimaging techniques such as fMRI. She also employs ecologically valid methodologies, such as mobile experience sampling in daily life, psychophysiology, and analysis of qualitative data.
Chapter in book
- Taruffi, L. (2019). The Neuropsychology of Music and Emotions. In Emotionen: Ein interdisziplinäres Handbuch. Kappelhoff, H., Bakels, J.-H., Lehmann, H. & Schmitt, C. J.B. Metzler, Stuttgart. 427-432.
- Taruffi, L. & Koelsch, S. (2018). Why we listen to sad music: Philosophical perspectives, psychological functions and underlying brain mechanisms. In The Routledge Companion to Music, Mind, and Wellbeing. Gouk, P., Kennaway, J. Prins, J. & Thormaehlen, W. Routledge.
- Deil, Juliane, Markert, Nina, Normand, Philip, Kammen, Philipp, Küssner, Mats B. & Taruffi, Liila (2022). Mind-wandering during contemporary live music: An exploratory study. Musicae Scientiae
- Taruffi, Liila (2021). Mind-Wandering during Personal Music Listening in Everyday Life: Music-Evoked Emotions Predict Thought Valence. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18(23): 12321.
- Herff, S. A., Cecchetti, G., Taruffi, L. & Déguernel, K. (2021). Music influences vividness and content of imagined journeys in a directed visual imagery task. Scientific Reports 11(1): 15990.
- Taruffi, L., Skouras, S., Pehrs, C. & Koelsch, S. (2021). Trait Empathy Shapes Neural Responses Toward Sad Music. Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience 21(1): 231-241.
- Taruffi, Liila & Küssner, Mats B. (2019). A Review of Music-Evoked Visual Mental Imagery: Conceptual Issues, Relation to Emotion, and Functional Outcome. Psychomusicology: Music, Mind and Brain 29(2-3): 62-74.
- Pehrs, C., Zaki, J., Taruffi, L., Kuchinke, L. & Koelsch, S. (2018). Hippocampal-Temporopolar Connectivity Contributes to Episodic Simulation During Social Cognition. Scientific Reports 8(1): 9409.
- Taruffi, L. & Küssner, M. B. (2018). The need to consider pluralistic functions of music from a global perspective. Physics of Life Reviews 25: 88-89.
- Taruffi, L. (2018). Sad music and self-reflection. Physics of Life Reviews 25: 131-133.
- Taruffi, L., Pehrs, C., Skouras, S. & Koelsch, S. (2017). Effects of Sad and Happy Music on Mind-Wandering and the Default Mode Network. Scientific Reports 7(1): 14396.
- Taruffi, L. & Koelsch, S. (2017). Implications of the Vienna Integrated Model of Art Perception for art-based interventions in clinical populations. Physics of Life Reviews 21: 145-147.
- Taruffi, L., Allen, R., Downing, J. & Heaton, P. (2017). Individual Differences in Music-Perceived Emotions. Music Perception: An Interdisciplinary Journal 34(3): 253-266.
- Taruffi, L. & Koelsch, S. (2014). The Paradox of Music-Evoked Sadness: An Online Survey. PLoS ONE 9(10): e110490.