Passion for Violently Themed Music and Psychological Well-Being: A Survey Analysis

Merrick Powell*, Kirk N. Olsen, Robert J. Vallerand, William Forde Thompson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

While the benefits to mood and well-being from passionate engagement with music are well-established, far less is known about the relationship between passion for explicitly violently themed music and psychological well-being. The present study employed the Dualistic Model of Passion to investigate whether harmonious passion (i.e., passionate engagement that is healthily balanced with other life activities) predicts positive music listening experiences and/or psychological well-being in fans of violently themed music. We also investigated whether obsessive passion (i.e., uncontrollable passionate engagement with an activity) predicts negative music listening experiences and/or psychological ill-being. Fans of violently themed music (N = 177) completed the passion scale, scale of positive and negative affective experiences, and various psychological well- and ill-being measures. As hypothesised, harmonious passion for violently themed music significantly predicted positive affective experiences which, in turn, predicted psychological well-being. Obsessive passion for violently themed music significantly predicted negative affective experiences which, in turn, predicted ill-being. Findings support the Dualistic Model of Passion, and suggest that even when music engagement includes violent content, adaptive outcomes are often experienced. We propose that the nature of one’s passion for music is more influential in predicting well-being than the content or valence of the lyrical themes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number486
JournalBehavioral Sciences
Volume12
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022

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