nep-cul New Economics Papers
on Cultural Economics
Issue of 2020‒01‒20
five papers chosen by
Roberto Zanola
Università degli Studi del Piemonte Orientale

  1. Cultural evolution of emotional expression in 50 years of song lyrics By Brand, Charlotte Olivia; Acerbi, Alberto; Mesoudi, Alex
  2. Setting the Transgender Agenda: Intermedia Agenda-Setting in the Digital News Environment By Billard, Thomas J
  3. Daya Tarik Museum Sonobudoyo Sebagai Warisan Budaya Yogyakarta By Yogyakarta, Perpustakaan STIPRAM; Vangelisca, Zita
  4. Socially Constructing a Moral Utopia: Representing Rural Spaces and Places in American Movies about HIV/AIDS By Kylo-Patrick Hart
  5. Using a Local Public Good to Attract Representative Creative Class Members: The Inefficient Equilibrium Case By Batabyal, Amitrajeet; Yoo, Seung Jick

  1. By: Brand, Charlotte Olivia (University of Exeter); Acerbi, Alberto; Mesoudi, Alex (University of Exeter)
    Abstract: The cultural dynamics of music has recently become a popular avenue of research in the field of cultural evolution, reflecting a growing interest in art and popular culture more generally. Just as biologists seek to explain population-level trends in genetic evolution in terms of micro-evolutionary processes such as selection, drift and migration, cultural evolutionists have sought to explain population-level cultural phenomena in terms of underlying social, psychological and demographic factors. Primary amongst these factors are learning biases, describing how cultural items are socially transmitted from person to person. As big datasets become more openly available and workable, and statistical modelling techniques become more powerful, efficient and user-friendly, describing population-level dynamics in terms of simple, individual-level learning biases is becoming more feasible. Here we test for the presence of learning biases in two large datasets of popular song lyrics dating from 1965-2015. We find some evidence of content bias, prestige bias and success bias in the proliferation of negative lyrics, and suggest that negative expression of emotions in music, and perhaps art generally, provides an avenue for people to not only process and express their own negative emotions, but also benefit from the knowledge that prestigious others experience similarly negative emotions as they do.
    Date: 2019–01–17
  2. By: Billard, Thomas J (University of Southern California)
    Abstract: Transgender issues have recently emerged as highly salient topics of political contestation in the United States. This paper investigates one relevant factor in that ascent: intermedia agenda-setting between digital-native and legacy press news. Through a content analysis of the top-five digital-native and top-five legacy press online news entities from 2014 to 2015, we investigate the dynamics of intermedia agenda-setting in the context of transgender topics, both at the level of attention to transgender topics in general and at the level of attention to specific issues related to the transgender community (e.g., anti-transgender violence). Results indicate significant causal effects of digital-native coverage on legacy press coverage at the level of general attention to transgender topics. However, results also indicate that at the level of specific transgender issues, digital-native coverage drives legacy press coverage on some issues, which legacy press coverage drives digital-native coverage on others. Implications for intermedia agenda-setting in the digital news media environment and for the future of transgender political rights movements are discussed.
    Date: 2018–10–09
  3. By: Yogyakarta, Perpustakaan STIPRAM; Vangelisca, Zita
    Abstract: Jogjakarta is worth mentioning as a city rich in culture and history. Sonobudoyo Museum is one that has its own charm for tourists. Sonobudoyo Museum stores various collections that are closely related to culture and other historical objects. In addition, the architecture of the museum building is also a classic Javanese style is very unique and beautiful. The location of Sonobudoyo Museum is divided into two parts: Unit I is located at Jalan Trikora No 6 Yogyakarta, while Unit II is located in Ndalem Condrokiranan Wijilan near North Square of Yogyakarta. In this Sonobudoyo Museum, tourists can find interesting collections related to Indonesian culture, as well as collections from prehistoric times until the entry of Islam to Indonesia. Visitors can also get to know the culture and history of Indonesia by visiting this museum, so it is suitable if the Museum Sonobudoyo dubbed as a tourist attraction area of Indonesian cultural heritage.
    Date: 2019–12–06
  4. By: Kylo-Patrick Hart (Texas Christian University)
    Abstract: With regard to American movies about HIV/AIDS, the social construction of rural spaces and places is one that is much more innocent and pure than the social construction of urban environs. Accordingly, this presentation analyzes the social construction of rural locations as a moral utopia in representative AIDS movies made and released in the United States during the first two decades of the AIDS pandemic. It articulates the representational connections in such offerings between traditional ways of being and purity, values of the past and wholesome continuity, innocent iconography and patriarchal expectations. When all is said and done, this presentation demonstrates how rural spaces and places in American AIDS movies came to represent all that is morally good and pure in U.S. society, in dramatic contrast to representations of urban spaces and places and their continual associations with excess, depravity, monstrosity, pollution, and sickness. It further demonstrates how these influential representations regularly reinforced inaccurate perceptions of HIV/AIDS as a threat almost exclusively to residents of urban environments, thereby concealing more accurate social information about the realities of the AIDS pandemic and the range of individuals ? in all sorts of spaces and places ? who needed to proactively protect themselves from its spread.
    Keywords: cinema, HIV/AIDS, media, purity, representation, rural areas, social constructionism, utopia
    JEL: I10 L82 N90
    Date: 2019–10
  5. By: Batabyal, Amitrajeet; Yoo, Seung Jick
    Abstract: Batabyal and Beladi (2019) have recently analyzed a model of competition between two cities that use a local public good (LPG) to attract members of the creative class. The creative class consists of artists and engineers and they study the behavior of a representative artist and an engineer. In this note, we explore three implications of the use of this “representative artist and engineer” modeling strategy. First, we show that the use of such a strategy can lead one to study an inefficient equilibrium in the aggregate economy. Second, we point out that in this inefficient equilibrium, the beliefs of the representative artist and the engineer are inconsistent. Finally, we contend that if we depart from the “representative artist and engineer” construct and focus instead on the entire creative class population which we model as a continuum, then the inefficient equilibrium mentioned above can be turned into an efficient equilibrium.
    Keywords: Artist, Creative Class, Efficient Equilibrium, Engineer, Inefficient Equilibrium
    JEL: D50 H40 R11
    Date: 2019–12–03

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