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November 1962

The Psychology of the Castrato Voice: A reprint from Folia Phoniatrica.

Arch Otolaryngol. 1962;76(5):479. doi:10.1001/archotol.1962.00740050491019

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There is the age-old controversy as to whether times produce the men or whether men's thoughts produce the times. Here is a most interesting commentary on this question.

As all who have read any of Moses' books or papers know, he has perhaps the most profound understanding of the influence of individuals' minds on their voices. But here is something of a switch.

I am sure that your reviewer speaks for the overwhelming majority of persons who have any interest in the subject, that it is their conception that during the period of European history when young boys with clear and beautiful soprano voices were castrated at the direction of their parents, that the castrations were carried out simply in order that their unique voices be preserved for use on the stage for pecuniary reasons or in church choirs for religious reasons.

But Moses will have little or none of

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