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date: 06 December 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter discusses the general impact of context on the aesthetic experience. It is designed to anticipate the other chapters’ discussions of context’s specific areas—the social, the physical or institutional, information and framing, museums, background or personality-related features. Here, the authors offer a more general consideration discussing key aspects such as: What even is context? How can it best be thought about? What are the key issues that might be considered? And, especially, how can it be generally integrated into present knowledge of models of aesthetic processing experience? Beginning with the interest in context throughout the history of aesthetics, the chapter builds a presentation of empirical approaches and especially theory, focusing on context’s main layers and points of influence. It then discusses how key context issues might be considered in models of aesthetic processing, with the goal of providing a framework for better approaching context aspects in this book and in one’s own future studies. This is also interspersed with what the authors consider to be some of the more intriguing studies in order to spur readers’ thinking about the potential for studying context. The chapter concludes with some major issues, some candidates for future consideration, and suggestions for further reading and education.

Keywords: Context, aesthetic processing models, emotion, appraisal, general theory

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