Music That Makes You Dumb: Wait A Minute…


Some might remember that hiiilarious “Books That Make You Dumb” chart from a few months back that collected data from Facebook and matched up different university’s favorite books to their SAT scores. If a school’s average SAT score was below 1150, The Book of Mormon and The Devil Wears Prada were big favorites, whereas on the higher end of the spectrum, 100 Years of Solitude and Freakonomics ruled. We remember being amused by it, and thankful that we had carefully omitted The Bell Jar from our Facebook profile so as not to skew our school’s numbers.

Well, the creator has produced a new chart, and this time it’s about music. The problem is, this one is a lot less funny and a lot more complicated–whereas lower SAT scores predictably produce students who read less compelling literature, the music chart reflects a less causal relationship between taste and “intelligence.” It’s alarming to think that one needs higher test scores in order to enjoy “better” music, as the chart would imply.

We think the problem is not about taste, but about socio-economic levels reflected in the SAT scores–the chart is titled “Music that Makes You Dumb,” but that is neither causally accurate nor that amusing. While it makes sense that over-privileged college kids like Guster and Ben Folds (word!) while everyone else likes T.I., there’s no reason that it can’t work the other way around. We know it’s not meant to be taken so seriously, but we’re pretty obsessed with the convergence of the highbrow and lowbrow–something that this chart seems to be denying. And that’s not cool.