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Visualizing Aesthetics Across Two Centuries

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  1. The nature of beauty: behavior, cognition, and neurobiology

    Research output: Contribution to journalReviewpeer-review

  2. There are no aesthetic emotions: Comment on Menninghaus et al. (2019)

    Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debateResearchpeer-review

  3. A Farewell to Art: Aesthetics as a Topic in Psychology and Neuroscience

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  4. What Counts as Aesthetics in Science? A Bibliometric Analysis and Visualization of the Scientific Literature From 1970 to 2018

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Empirical aesthetics is associated with two research questions: How the mind generally assigns value to sensory stimuli and how it responds specifically to art objects. Researchers have debated whether these phenomena share enough to warrant being collapsed into a single field. To ask how these particular questions came to be associated with aesthetics, we conducted Google Ngram analyses over a corpus of books spanning two centuries. Analyses trace the frequency of “big questions” about art and beauty, and how the term aesthetic appears relative to other concepts. Results indicate the 19th century was dominated by notions of beauty and an aesthetic sense. Questions about art and aesthetic experience become more frequent during the 20th century. Results are interpreted with respect to associated affective and evaluative concepts, art movements, and scientific debates. Understanding how aesthetics is used over time can cast light on the ways current work is being conceived and pursued.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEmpirical Studies of the Arts
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)78-100
Number of pages23
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2020.

Copyright 2020 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

    Research areas

  • aesthetic experience, aesthetic sense, aesthetics, art, beauty, Google Ngram

ID: 61916692