Saturday, October 17, 2009

Christine Lavin and Political Psychology

My Illinois political science colleague Jeff Mondak has written a song with Christine Lavin about the genetic determinants of political behavior. (Jeff has written a number of poems and songs for kids.) In addition to Jeff's contribution of a couple of verses, Christine also consulted with political scientists John Alford and John Hibbing (who with Carolyn Funk published one of the breakthrough articles on the topic, "Are Political Orientations Genetically Transmitted?," in the May 2005 American Political Science Review), and she got Washington Post humorist Gene Weingarten to lend his brain to the endeavor as well.

You can find the result, a song entitled "Hardwired," on Christine's website. The song surrounds a five question test to figure out if you're liberal or conservative. (I'm more conservative than you might think.)

Jeff reports that Christine has been singing it in concert and has been enjoying watching the audience from stage as they take the quiz.

(Since we like keeping track of songs about Pluto here on Sound of Blackbirds, we should note that Jeff also has written a song entitled "Pluto's Not a Planet Anymore.")

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