Sunday, December 28, 2014

Good and bad influences

In a recent post, I discussed a Pew survey of eight nations in 1994 that asked whether various things were good or bad influences "on the way things are going in this country" (people could volunteer "neither" or "both").  Americans were unusually positive about religion (73%-15%, more favorable than all except Mexico), computers and technology (85%-7%, also second after Mexico) and the military (71%-18%, most favorable).

Americans were unusually negative about some things:  movies (27%-54%, least favorable), rock music (21%-64%, least favorable), and TV shows (25%-53%, also least favorable).*  This is even more striking because the United States has a disproportionate influence on popular culture, so that nationalism is not a potential reason for opposition.

*in some nations, they asked about "TV variety shows," but the documentation doesn't specify which ones.

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