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date: 26 July 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter presents an overview of the concept of processing fluency in aesthetic processing. In its most general form higher ease of processing, i.e., higher fluency, is said to lead to higher liking. The chapter shows that this claim is hardly tenable in aesthetics. Absolute higher fluency leads to higher liking in only a few limited settings. It is rather the experience of a relative increase in fluency, or decrease in disfluency, that affects our appreciation of aesthetic stimuli. Thus, the dynamics of visual processing and the resulting effect can help explain our reactions to aesthetic stimuli. This chapter presents three main theories that try to model these dynamics of visual processing and explain the resulting influence on our aesthetic responses.

Keywords: Processing fluency, aesthetic pleasure, liking, predictive coding, prediction error, art

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