Friday, May 06, 2011

Increasing vanity in our culture.

John Tierney points to some fascinating work that looks at the lyrics of popular songs to assay our culture's increasing self absorption:
...after a computer analysis of three decades of hit songs, Dr. DeWall and other psychologists report finding what they were looking for: a statistically significant trend toward narcissism and hostility in popular music. As they hypothesized, the words “I” and “me” appear more frequently along with anger-related words, while there’s been a corresponding decline in “we” and “us” and the expression of positive emotions.
Last year, data from studies on nearly 50,000 students was subjected to a meta-analysis published in Social Psychological and Personality Science, that confirmed that narcissism has increased significantly in the past three decades. During this period, there have also been reports of higher levels of loneliness and depression

1 comment:

  1. Hm, i wouldn't call this 'vanity', but isolation or loneliness. Vanity is the celebration of the superficial, which i don't think is at odds with solidarity.