The music we like says a lot about our moral values

The music we like says a lot about our moral values

Several scientific studies have shown that music does not only soften morals, as the adage states. A European study even claims that it has an influence on the ethical rules that we set for ourselves in daily life.

An Italian-British research team has established a surprising link between the fourth art and morality after conducting an experiment involving 1,480 volunteers. The latter completed psychometric questionnaires assessing their moral values. For their part, the researchers obtained information about their favorite artists based on the pages they “liked” on Facebook.

The academics were then able to extract the acoustic and lyrical characteristics of the five most popular songs from each of the study participants’ favorite musicians. In particular, they used machine learning algorithms and various word processing techniques to examine the narratives, morals, feelings and emotions evoked in each artist’s song lyrics.

This experimental protocol highlighted the fact that music provides much more information about an individual’s moral values ​​than demographic data about them. The timbre and pitch of his favorite singer’s voice would enlighten us on his ability to demonstrate benevolence and fairness, while the lyrics of the songs he likes would inform us about his vision of loyalty, authority and of purity.

All of these results suggest that our musical preferences are a reflection of our personal convictions, even if this study, published in the journal PLOS One, has certain methodological limitations. “Music is not just a source of entertainment or aesthetic pleasure; it is also a powerful means that reflects and shapes our moral sensibilities. By understanding this connection, we can open new avenues for music-based interventions that would promote positive moral development“said Vjosa Preniqi, lead author of the study and doctoral student at Queen Mary University of London, in a statement.

The benefits of music on our brain

Slide: The benefits of music on our brain