Music preference and attitudes toward drugs: The moderating role of values

Carlos Eduardo Pimentel, Taciano L. Milfont, Valdiney V. Gouveia, Katia C Vione, Renan P. Monteiro


Music has a fundamental importance in people’s lives. Specifically, preference for certain music styles has been associated to substance abuse and favorable attitudes toward drug use. We replicate previous findings by showing that greater preference for alternative music (rap, heavy metal, punk, reggae, rock, electronic) was associated to more favorable attitudes toward use of alcohol, marijuana and other drugs. In addition, we also examined whether values could moderate the music-drug link. Participants were 269 Brazilian undergraduate students with a mean age of 21 years, mostly female (65.8%). They answered the Alternative Music Scale, Attitudes toward Drugs Use Scales (Alcohol, Marijuana and Other Drugs) and Basic Values Survey. Results indicated that the correlations between alternative music preference and favorable attitudes toward drug use were stronger among students who placed less emphasis on normative values (e.g., obedience, tradition). In conclusion, promoting normative values could buffer the negative effects of alternative music preference on attitudes toward drug use.
Keywords: music preference; drug use; attitudes; values.

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