A classical music soundtrack is the go-to for movies when depicting a psychopath. From Beethoven in A Clockwork Orange to Mozart in Silence of the Lambs, if a film wants to establish a character as a monster with a human side, classical is the standard. But, now researchers at NYU are attempting to discover if musical genres correlate to certain psychopathy, and the results indicate that Justin Bieber is preferred over Bach.
Psychopathy is a personality disorder featuring manipulativeness and lack of empathy, and you might think that all psychopaths are in prison. But psychology professor Pascal Wallisch says they are all over.
The study began when researchers gave a questionnaire to 190 students at NYU that helped to indicate their level of psychopathy and included statements like, “For me what’s right is whatever I can get away with,” and “Love is overrated.”
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Then, according to The Washington Post, the students listened to a wide range of songs from classical music to recent Billboard hits and rated the tunes on a 7-point scale. Wallisch and recent graduate Nicole Leal conducted the study and looked for correlations between levels of psychopathy and a preference for certain songs.
The study, which will be presented at the Society for Neuroscience meeting this week in Washington – with 30,000 people in attendance – and will show that Eminem’s 2002 hit Lose Yourself from the 8 Mile soundtrack, Blackstreet’s 1996 chart-topper No Diggity, and Justin Bieber’s What Do You Mean are the most popular songs among students who scored high on the psychopathy scale.
On the other hand, Dire Straits’ Money for Nothing, the country classic Wayward Wind, and The Knack’s My Sharona ended up as the least popular.
Photos of Justin Bieber spotted at the Fall Out Boy concert in Inglewood, California 2 days ago. (November 17) pic.twitter.com/aUrqUAi02O
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Leal says that they have not yet found a pattern when it comes to what types of songs are popular with psychopaths, but she originally thought people high in psychopathy would prefer songs without lyrics, but that didn’t fit with the results of the study.
Justin Bieber’s music may be popular with higher levels of psychopathy, but he isn’t recording anything new anytime soon. He canceled his tour to take care of his own mental health, and according to PopSugar, he and Selena Gomez have decided to keep their rekindled romance low-key, after a week of crazy attention due to the news that the two singers were back together.