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Monday, February 25, 2008

Music broadcasts more than sound waves

We decided recently to expand our department's musical repertoire beyond Murray's ever-thumping playlist. So last week some Vampire Weekend, Jay-Z, and Amy Winehouse floated from various speakers.

However, new research indicates that we were unwittingly exposing ourselves to association with personality stereotypes based on our selections.

Peter Rentfrow and Samuel Gosling, two longtime researchers in the field of music and psychology, found in 1996 that certain personality traits are associated with music preferences.

This year, their research took those findings one step further to explore the stereotypes associated with certain types of music by asking evaluators describe personality types associated with various genres.

Serious job implications here for the department-wide playlist. Start editing!

Evaluators were also asked to rank perceived drug use among fans of different genres:

(More about an unspoken glass ceiling!)

via Cognitive Daily


avin said...

Hm, interesting how there's a slight uptick when it comes to perceived ecstasy use among fans of religious music.

(waiting for Murray to give us his analysis)...

kuzelka said...

not only does music broadcast more than sound waves, but the lack of music also broadcasts more than silence. the natural ambient noises of our office space can either reinforce thoughts of happiness or sadness.

there's a great 'this american life' story on the topic. listen to act two 'hearing'

salina said...

Thanks for your comments, guys.

Kuz- you make a good point. Sometimes the quiet means peace, aloneness or "dammit I'm here on the weekend."

One thing I will say for most of us is that we have a pretty diversified taste in music, and in the context of this study, that's a good thing. In the context of our department cacophony, it's a little confusing. :)