The Corner

Quiz Culture

Iain: Thanks for that. I’m way behind the curve here. There’s a whole subculture of quiz contests I didn’t know about.

A reader is enthusing to me about the National Academic Quiz Tournaments, for example. Here are some rankings that seem to go on for ever, and would be fun for someone to do a full statistical analysis on by name provenance. In a nice little stereotype-confounder, the number one ranked kid of the whole lot is Hispanic. My reader:

Also note that many of the top schools are charter or magnet schools. Quizbowl at this level is more than just Jeopardy-esque buzzer skills; these are very in-depth questions that require deep knowledge (i.e. not just rote memorization) to get as early as many of these players get. Doing well requires not only natural talent, but an immense amount of self-discipline to study and learn a huge amount of knowledge.


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