There's 'Important,' And Then There's 'Important': Another Hazard Of Listmaking

Kelly Clarkson

Kelly Clarkson performs on American Idol in 2002. () Kevin Winter/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Kevin Winter/Getty Images

If you've been watching things over at NPR Music, you know that they've just posted their list of The Decade's 50 Most Important Recordings. I recently referred to this feature elsewhere as "NPR Music Whacks The Beehive With A Broom Handle." Because nothing makes people angry quite like lists, and trying to pick 50 recordings over 10 years — five per year, for non-mathematicians — leads to unavoidable incompleteness and so forth and so on, and then everybody is mad.

But really, what's most interesting about the discussion they're having in the comments is the entire concept of "importance."

Read the rest of the essay at Monkey See>>

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