Science Has Confirmed That Game Of Thrones And Harry Potter Fans Make Better Partners
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Researchers at the University of Oklahoma analysed over 400 readers of both sexes, measuring their exposure to different fiction genres and their attitudes towards gender roles and sexual behaviour.
The readers were tested on their exposure to seven different genres - classics, contemporary literary fiction, romance, fantasy, science fiction, thriller, and horror - and asked for their opinions on a series of unrealistic and destructive beliefs about relationships.
These beliefs included phrases such as: "disagreement is destructive", "mind-reading is expected", "romantic partners cannot change", "the sexes are different" and "the expectation of sexual perfection".
The respondents also had to mark to which degree they agreed with statements such as "when couples disagree, it seems like the relationship is falling apart".
The study, entitled "What you read and what you believe: Genre exposure and beliefs about relationships" and published in the Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts journal, found that people who had the most exposure to science fiction and fantasy genres had the healthiest beliefs about the way romantic relationships should work.
For example, readers who enjoyed fantasy and science fiction novels were "less likely to support the belief that disagreement is destructive".
Fans of the genre were also less likely to hold "the belief that partners cannot change, the belief that sexes are different, and the belief that mind-reading is expected in relationships".
The research team, lead by the University of Oklahoma's Stephanie C. Stern, wrote of their findings: "Individuals who scored higher for exposure to science fiction and fantasy were less likely to endorse four unrealistic relationship beliefs."
We're taking this as a sign that we need to read the Harry Potter series again from start to finish for the twentieth time.