Almost everyone enjoys a good mystery, but not everyone enjoys the SAME KIND of mystery plots. It turns out that the kind of mysteries we like to read reveal our personalities.
New research suggests that not everyone enjoys a murder mystery with a surprise ending. People who have lower levels of self-esteem prefer crime and detective stories that confirm their suspicions in the end, while those with higher self-esteem enjoy a story that goes against expectations.
Psychologist Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick says, “Personality plays a role in whether a person wants to be confirmed or surprised when they read mysteries. People with low self-esteem like to feel they knew all along who committed the crime, probably because it makes them feel smarter.” But everyone seems to enjoy mysteries where there are no strong hints of how the story would end.
Overall, Knobloch-Westerwick says that her research shows that mysteries probably appeal more to people who enjoy thinking more than average. She says, “The mystery genre is one of the more complex genres. Mysteries have multiple suspects, and multiple possible motives, which all add complexity. It is much different than a suspense story which just has a good guy vs. a bad guy.”
Art credit: freeimages.co.uk
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