Nostalgia in the Time of Coronavirus

In the early months of Covid, I found myself re-watching The Wire. I wasn’t sure why, but it was something familiar (and an excellent series to boot), and I was just drawn to it.

I had a passing thought that it might be a reaction to the pandemic. That nostalgia was the driver.

And it seems, in terms of music, this might be a thing.

It seems that many of us, since the pandemic began, have turned to music as a means to soothe ourselves. And not just any music – but music from a time before now.

Dr. Timothy Yu-Cheong Yeung has written a paper, analyzing data from Spotify to figure out what we’re listening to. And it sonds pretty fascinating.

Negative emotions are various but they are similar in one dimension, which is it hurts and leads people to react, to amend, to try to counter the negative feelings. One possible way to recover – or to generate positive utility – is to seek nostalgia that reminds people of the good old days.

It seems to make sense, with so many of us unhappy with the current state of the world. Yesterday always seems better than now.

[via BoingBoing]

Related:
Anxiety in the Time of Coronavirus
The Wire, Revisited

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