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The differential power of extraneous influences to modify aesthetic judgments of biological and artifactual stimuli

Bignardi, G; Ishizu, T; Zeki, S; (2021) The differential power of extraneous influences to modify aesthetic judgments of biological and artifactual stimuli. PsyCh Journal , 10 (2) pp. 190-199. 10.1002/pchj.415. Green open access

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Abstract

We addressed the question of the extent to which external information is capable of modifying aesthetic ratings given to two different categories of stimuli—images of faces (which belong to the biological category) and those of abstract paintings with no recognizable objects (which sit in the artifactual category). A total of 51 participants of different national origins rated the beauty of both sets of stimuli, indicating the certainty of their rating; they then re‐rated them after being exposed to the opinions of others on their aesthetic status. Of these 51 participants, 42 who met our criteria were selected to complete the experiment. The results showed that individuals were less prone to modifying their ratings of stimuli belonging to the biological category compared to those falling into the artifactual category. We discuss this finding in light of our theoretical Bayesian–Laplacian model and on the evidence given by previous empirical research.

Type: Article
Title: The differential power of extraneous influences to modify aesthetic judgments of biological and artifactual stimuli
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1002/pchj.415
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/pchj.415
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: artifactual beauty, biological beauty, neuroesthetics
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Cell and Developmental Biology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10119500
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