About this topic
Summary Experimental philosophy is a new movement that uses systematic experimental studies to shed light on philosophical issues. In other words, experimental philosophers apply the methods commonly associated with psychology (experimentation, statistical analysis, developmental research, reaction time studies, patient studies, and so on), but they use those methods to address the kinds of questions that have been traditionally associated with philosophy. The experimental philosophy movement is united more by a shared methodology than by a shared research agenda or metaphilosophical viewpoint. Thus, while work in experimental philosophy makes use of systematic empirical study, this methodology has been applied to a wide array of different philosophical questions, and researchers have offered quite different views about the way in which such experimental work can prove philosophically valuable. So perhaps the best way to become acquainted with the field of experimental philosophy is to look in detail at the actual research findings.
Key works Key work in experimental philosophy has been done in virtually all areas of philosophy including philosophy of language (Turri 2013, Machery et al 2004), mind (Sytsma & Machery 2010), metaphysics (Alicke et al 2011), intentionality (Knobe 2010, Young et al 2006), free will and moral responsibility (Nichols & Knobe 2007Nichols 2011), metaethics (Sarkissian et al 2011Sarkissian et al 2010), and epistemology (Weinberg et al 2001, Beebe & Buckwalter 2010, Starmans & Friedman 2012).
Introductions Buckwalter & Sytsma forthcoming provide a general introduction to experimental philosophy. Knobe & Nichols 2008  and Knobe & Nichols 2013 include collections of some of the early papers in experimental philosophy that established the field, as well as new commentaries and responses from a broader range of philosophers. Knobe et al 2012 provides an up-to-date review of research in experimental philosophy. This introduction is written for an audience of psychologists and therefore tends to emphasize empirical findings rather than philosophical implications. There have also been several excellent introductory textbooks including Sytsma & Livengood 2015, Alexander 2012, and Mallon & Nichols 2012 juxtaposing traditional and cutting edge experimental readings. Experimental philosophy is a rapidly growing field, and breaking xphi news and results can be found at the Experimental Philosophy Blog and on Facebook and Twitter
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  1. Interview with Paul Égré.Lina M. Lissia - 2021 - The Reasoner 15 (1):1-3.
  2. Human Nonmonotonic Reasoning: The Importance of Seeing the Logical Strength of Arguments.Marilyn Ford - 2005 - Synthese 146 (1-2):71-92.
    Three studies of human nonmonotonic reasoning are described. The results show that people find such reasoning quite difficult, although being given problems with known subclass-superclass relationships is helpful. The results also show that recognizing differences in the logical strengths of arguments is important for the nonmonotonic problems studied. For some of these problems, specificity – which is traditionally considered paramount in drawing appropriate conclusions – was irrelevant and so should have lead to a “can’t tell” response; however, people could give (...)
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Experimental Aesthetics
  1. Lost in Musical Translation: A Cross-Cultural Study of Musical Grammar and its Relation to Affective Expression in Two Musical Idioms Between Chennai and Geneva.Constant Bonard - 2018 - In Florian Cova & Sébastien Réhault (eds.), Advances in Experimental Philosophy of Aesthetics.
    Can music be considered a language of the emotions? The most common view today is that this is nothing but a Romantic cliché. Mainstream philosophy seems to view the claim that 'Music is the language of the emotions' as a slogan that was once vaguely defended by Rousseau, Goethe, or Kant, but that cannot be understood literally when one takes into consideration last century’s theories of language, such as Chomsky's on syntax or Tarski's on semantics (Scruton 1997: ch. 7, see (...)
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  2. Emotion in Imaginative Resistance.Dylan Campbell, William Kidder, Jason D’Cruz & Brendan Gaesser - 2021 - Philosophical Psychology 34 (7):895-937.
    Imaginative resistance refers to cases in which one’s otherwise flexible imaginative capacity is constrained by an unwillingness or inability to imaginatively engage with a given claim. In three studies, we explored which specific imaginative demands engender resistance when imagining morally deviant worlds and whether individual differences in emotion predict the degree of this resistance. In Study 1 (N = 176), participants resisted the notion that harmful actions could be morally acceptable in the world of a narrative regardless of the author’s (...)
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  3. CLAUDE LÉVI-STRAUSS AND THE MYTH ANAMORPHOSES.Gustavo Ruiz da Silva & Mariza Martins Furquim Werneck - 2021 - Revista Avesso: Pensamento, Memória E Sociedade 1 (2):1-17.
    The article intends to demonstrate that, when building his science, Claude Lévi- Strauss abandons the categories used by the traditional studies of the myth and creates singular epistemological tools, suggested by the music, by the natural science and by the plastic arts. These tools, which we can denominate aesthetic operators, light up, in an exemplary way, the dissolution process that suffers the mythical matter when transforming in the time and in the space. When establishing that new form of thinking, the (...)
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  4. Maggots Are Delicious, Sunsets Hideous: False, or Do You Just Disagree? Data on Truth Relativism About Judgments of Personal Taste and Aesthetics.Dylan Murray - 2020 - In Tania Lombrozo, Joshua Knobe & Shaun Nichols (eds.), Oxford Studies in Experimental Philosophy, 3. Oxford University Press. pp. 64-96.
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  5. Being Quasi-Moved: A View From the Lab.Jérôme Pelletier - 2019 - In Florian Cova & Sébastien Réhault (eds.), Advances in experimental philosophy of aesthetics. Bloomsbury. pp. 123-141.
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  6. Why is That Art?Richard Kamber & Taylor Enoch - 2019 - In Florian Cova & Sébastien Réhault (eds.), Advances in experimental philosophy of aesthetics. Bloomsbury. pp. 79-102.
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  7. Measuring the Unimaginable: Imaginative Resistance to Fiction and Related Constructs.Jessica Black & Jennifer Barnes - 2017 - Personality and Individual Differences 111 (1):71-79.
    Imaginative resistance refers to a perceived inability or unwillingness to enter into fictional worlds that portray deviant moralities (Gendler, 2000): we can all easily imagine that dragons exist, but many people feel incapable of imagining fictional worlds in which morality works differently. Although this phenomenon has received much attention from philosophers, no one has attempted to operationalize the construct in a self-report scale. In Study 1, we developed the Imaginative Resistance Scale (IRS), investigated its relationship to theoretically related constructs, and (...)
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  8. Impossible or Improbable: The Difficulty of Imagining Morally Deviant Worlds.Barnes Jennifer & Black Jessica - 2016 - Imagination, Cognition and Personality 36 (1):27-40.
    Prior research has investigated children’s ability to distinguish between possible and impossible events in our own world, but relatively little empirical research has investigated adults’ intuitions about the boundaries or limitations of imaginary worlds. Here, we presented participants with brief scenarios that were either Morally Deviant, Factually Unlikely, or Conceptually Contradictory. Participants rated how easy it was for them to imagine a world in which each description held true and assessed whether such a world was improbable or impossible. Worlds in (...)
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  9. The Role of Teleological Thinking in Judgments of Persistence of Musical Works.Elzė Sigutė Mikalonytė & Vilius Dranseika - forthcoming - The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism.
    In his paper “The Ontology of Musical Versions: Introducing the Hypothesis of Nested Types” (2019), Nemesio Puy raises a hypothesis that continuity of the purpose is both a necessary and a sufficient condition for musical work’s identity. Puy’s hypothesis is relevant to two topics in cognitive psychology and experimental philosophy. The first topic is the prevalence of teleological reasoning about various objects and its influence on persistence and categorization judgments. The second one is the importance of an artist’s intention in (...)
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  10. De Gustibus Est Disputandum: An Empirical Investigation of the Folk Concept of Aesthetic Taste.Bonard Constant Charles, Florian Cova & Steve Humbert-Droz - forthcoming - In Jeremy Wyatt, Julia Zakkou & Dan Zeman (eds.), Perspectives on Taste.
    Past research on folk aesthetics has suggested that most people are subjectivists when it comes to aesthetic judgment. However, most people also make a distinction between good and bad aesthetic taste. To understand the extent to which these two observations conflict with one another, we need a better understanding of people's everyday concept of aesthetic taste. In this paper, we present the results of a study in which participants drawn from a representative sample of the US population were asked whether (...)
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  11. Interpretation of Modern Art Masterpieces: No Motor Reflection.Paolo Bartolomeo Pascolo & Andrea Bucci - 2021 - Progress in Neuroscience 5 (4-5):12.
    The article is an experiment that deals with "Embodied Simulation" and " Embodied Cognition". This work follows the procedures of studies of the Parma Group and against them try to demonstrate their failure. The cognition is not embodied at all, maybe a little and at least.
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  12. Moral Beauty, Inside and Out.Ryan P. Doran - 2021 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 99 (2):396-414.
    In this article, robust evidence is provided showing that an individual’s moral character can contribute to the aesthetic quality of their appearance, as well as being beautiful or ugly itself. It is argued that this evidence supports two main conclusions. First, moral beauty and ugliness reside on the inside, and beauty and ugliness are not perception-dependent as a result; and, second, aesthetic perception is affected by moral information, and thus moral beauty and ugliness are on the outside as well.
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  13. Can Artificial Intelligence Make Art?Elzė Sigutė Mikalonytė & Markus Kneer -
    In two experiments (total N=693) we explored whether people are willing to consider paintings made by AI-driven robots as art, and robots as artists. Across the two experiments, we manipulated three factors: (i) agent type (AI-driven robot v. human agent), (ii) behavior type (intentional creation of a painting v. accidental creation), and (iii) object type (abstract v. representational painting). We found that people judge robot paintings and human painting as art to roughly the same extent. However, people are much less (...)
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  14. Ecos de 60: Impossibilidade macroestrutural, possibilidades microestruturais. Com Júlia M. Rebouças.Gustavo Ruiz da Silva & Mariana Slerca - 2020 - Revista Avesso: Pensamento, Memória E Sociedade 1 (1):160-171.
    Entrevista com Júlia Rebouças, curadora, pesquisadora e crítica de arte.
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  15. Investigating Everyday Musical Interaction During COVID-19: An Experimental Procedure for Exploring Collaborative Playlist Engagement.Ilana Harris & Ian Cross - 2021 - Frontiers in Psychology 12.
    Musical Group Interaction has been found to promote prosocial tendencies, including empathy, across various populations. However, experimental study is lacking in respect of effects of everyday forms of musical engagement on prosocial tendencies, as well as whether key aspects—such as physical co-presence of MGI participants—are necessary to enhance prosocial tendencies. We developed an experimental procedure in order to study online engagement with collaborative playlists and to investigate socio-cognitive components of prosocial tendencies expected to increase as a consequence of engagement. We (...)
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  16. Measuring Metaaesthetics: Challenges and Ways Forward.David Moss & Lance S. Bush - 2021 - New Ideas in Psychology 62.
    A growing body of psychological research seeks to understand how people's thinking comports with long-standing philosophical theories, such as whether they view ethical or aesthetic truths as subjective or objective. Yet such research can be critically undermined if it fails to accurately characterize the philosophical positions in question and fails to ensure that subjects understand them appropriately. We argue that a recent article by Rabb et al. (2020) fails to meet these demands and propose several constructive solutions for future research.
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  17. Intuitions in the Ontology of Musical Works.Elzė Sigutė Mikalonytė - forthcoming - Review of Philosophy and Psychology:1-20.
    An impressive variety of theories of ontology of musical works has been offered in the last fifty years. Recently, the ontologists have been paying more attention to methodological issues, in particular, the problem of determining criteria of a good theory. Although different methodological approaches involve different views on the importance and exact role of intuitiveness of a theory, most philosophers writing on the ontology of music agree that intuitiveness and compliance with musical practice play an important part when judging theories. (...)
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  18. Virtual Terroir and the Premium Coffee Experience.Francisco Barbosa Escobar, Olivia Petit & Carlos Velasco - 2021 - Frontiers in Psychology 12.
    With its origin-centric value proposition, the specialty coffee industry seeks to educate consumers about the value of the origin of coffee and how the relationship with farmers ensures quality and makes coffee a premium product. While the industry has widely used stories and visual cues to communicate this added value, research studying whether and how these efforts influence consumers' experiences is scarce. Through three experiments, we explored the effect of images that evoke the terroir of coffee on the perception of (...)
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  19. Aesthetic Judgments of Live and Recorded Music: Effects of Congruence Between Musical Artist and Piece.Amy M. Belfi, David W. Samson, Jonathan Crane & Nicholas L. Schmidt - 2021 - Frontiers in Psychology 12.
    The COVID-19 pandemic has brought the live music industry to an abrupt halt; subsequently, musicians are looking for ways to replicate the live concert experience virtually. The present study sought to investigate differences in aesthetic judgments of a live concert vs. a recorded concert, and whether these responses vary based on congruence between musical artist and piece. Participants made continuous ratings of their felt pleasure either during a live concert or while viewing an audiovisual recorded version of the same joint (...)
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  20. Considerations in Audio-Visual Interaction Models: An ERP Study of Music Perception by Musicians and Non-Musicians.Marzieh Sorati & Dawn M. Behne - 2021 - Frontiers in Psychology 11.
    Previous research with speech and non-speech stimuli suggested that in audiovisual perception, visual information starting prior to the onset of corresponding sound can provide visual cues, and form a prediction about the upcoming auditory sound. This prediction leads to audiovisual interaction. Auditory and visual perception interact and induce suppression and speeding up of the early auditory event-related potentials such as N1 and P2. To investigate AV interaction, previous research examined N1 and P2 amplitudes and latencies in response to audio only, (...)
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  21. The Vanity of Small Differences: Empirical Studies of Artistic Value and Extrinsic Factors.Shen-yi Liao, Aaron Meskin & Jade Fletcher - 2020 - Aesthetic Investigations 4 (1):412-427.
    To what extent are factors that are extrinsic to the artwork relevant to judgments of artistic value? One might approach this question using traditional philosophical methods, but one can also approach it using empirical methods; that is, by doing experimental philosophical aesthetics. This paper provides an example of the latter approach. We report two empirical studies that examine the significance of three sorts of extrinsic factors for judgments of artistic value: the causal-historical factor of contagion, the ontological factor of uniqueness, (...)
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  22. Lost in Intensity: Is There an Empirical Solution to the Quasi-Emotions Debate?Steve Humbert-Droz, Amanda Ludmilla Garcia, Vanessa Sennwald, Fabrice Teroni, Julien Deonna, David Sander & Florian Cova - 2020 - Aesthetic Investigations 4:460-482.
    Contrary to the emotions we feel in everyday contexts, the emotions we feel for fictional characters do not seem to require a belief in the existence of their object. This observation has given birth to a famous philosophical paradox (the ‘paradox of fiction’), and has led some philosophers to claim that the emotions we feel for fictional characters are not genuine emotions but rather “quasi-emotions”. Since then, the existence of quasi-emotions has been a hotly debated issue. Recently, philosophers and psychologists (...)
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  23. Form and Meaning in Music: Revisiting the Affective Character of the Major and Minor Modes.Timothy Justus, Laura Gabriel & Adela Pfaff - 2018 - Auditory Perception and Cognition 1 (3–4):229–247.
    Musical systems develop associations over time between aspects of musical form and concepts from outside of the music. Experienced listeners internalize these connotations, such that the formal elements bring to mind their extra-musical meanings. An example of musical form-meaning mapping is the association that Western listeners have between the major and minor modes and happiness and sadness, respectively. We revisit the emotional semantics of musical mode in a study of 44 American participants (musicians and non-musicians) who each evaluated the relatedness (...)
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  24. Method Development for Multimodal Data Corpus Analysis of Expressive Instrumental Music Performance.Federico Ghelli Visi, Stefan Östersjö, Robert Ek & Ulrik Röijezon - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 11.
    Musical performance is a multimodal experience, for performers and listeners alike. This paper reports on a pilot study which constitutes the first step toward a comprehensive approach to the experience of music as performed. We aim at bridging the gap between qualitative and quantitative approaches, by combining methods for data collection. The purpose is to build a data corpus containing multimodal measures linked to high-level subjective observations. This will allow for a systematic inclusion of the knowledge of music professionals in (...)
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  25. The Attraction of Synchrony: A Hip-Hop Dance Study.Colleen Tang Poy & Matthew H. Woolhouse - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 11.
    This study investigated an evolutionary-adaptive explanation for the cultural ubiquity of choreographed synchronous dance: that it evolved to increase interpersonal aesthetic appreciation and/or attractiveness. In turn, it is assumed that this may have facilitated social bonding and therefore procreation between individuals within larger groups. In this dual-dancer study, individuals performed fast or slow hip-hop choreography to fast-, medium-, or slow-tempo music; when paired laterally, this gave rise to split-screen video stimuli in which there were four basic categories of dancer and (...)
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  26. Why Don't We Trust Moral Testimony?James Andow - 2020 - Mind and Language 35 (4):456-474.
  27. Morality and the Imagination: Real-World Moral Beliefs Interfere with Imagining Fictional Content.Jessica Black & Jennifer Barnes - 2020 - Philosophical Psychology 33 (7):1018-1044.
    The purpose of this paper was to test whether imaginative resistance – a term used in the philosophical literature to describe the reluctance to imagine counter-moral worlds – is experienced by peo...
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  28. A Defence of Experimental Philosophy in Aesthetics.Clotilde Torregrossa - 2020 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 63 (8):885-907.
    Although experimental philosophy is now over a decade old, it has only recently been introduced to the domain of philosophical aesthetics. So why is there already a need to defend it? Because, as I argue in this paper, we can anticipate the three main types of objection generally addressed to experimental philosophy and show that none of them concern experimental philosophers in aesthetics. I begin with some general considerations about experimental philosophy and its, sometimes conflicting, characteristics. This framework is designed (...)
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  29. Intuitions on the Individuation of Musical Works. An Empirical Study.Elzė Sigutė Mikalonytė & Vilius Dranseika - 2020 - British Journal of Aesthetics 60 (3):253-282.
    Philosophers often consider better compliance with prevalent pre-theoretical intuitions to be an advantage of a theory of ontology of musical works. However, despite many predictions of what these intuitions on relevant questions might be, so far there is only one experimental philosophy study on the repeatability of musical works by Christopher Bartel. We decided to examine the intuitions concerning the individuation of musical works by creating scenarios reflecting the differences in the positions of musical ontologists: pure and timbral sonicism, instrumentalism, (...)
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  30. Making Sorrow Sweet: Emotion and Empathy in the Experience of Fiction. In A. Houen (Ed.), Affect and Literature (Cambridge Critical Concepts, Pp. 190-210). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Doi:10.1017/9781108339339.011.A. E. Denham, A. E. Denham & A. Denham - 2020 - In Denham, A. (2020). Making Sorrow Sweet: Emotion and Empathy in the Experience of Fiction. In A. Houen (Ed.), Affect and Literature (Cambridge Critical Concepts, pp. 190-210). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. doi:10.1017/9781108339339.011. Cambridge, UK: pp. 190-210.
    The nature and consequences of readers’ affective engagement with literature has, in recent years, captured the attention of experimental psychologists and philosophers alike. Psychological studies have focused principally on the causal mechanisms explaining our affective interactions with fictions, prescinding from questions concerning their rational justifiability. Transportation Theory, for instance, has sought to map out the mechanisms the reader tracks the narrative experientially, mirroring its descriptions through first-personal perceptual imaginings, affective and motor responses and even evaluative beliefs. Analytical philosophers, by contrast, (...)
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  31. Are Aesthetic Judgements Purely Aesthetic? Testing the Social Conformity Account.Matthew Inglis & Andrew Aberdein - 2020 - ZDM 52 (6):1127-1136.
    Many of the methods commonly used to research mathematical practice, such as analyses of historical episodes or individual cases, are particularly well-suited to generating causal hypotheses, but less well-suited to testing causal hypotheses. In this paper we reflect on the contribution that the so-called hypothetico-deductive method, with a particular focus on experimental studies, can make to our understanding of mathematical practice. By way of illustration, we report an experiment that investigated how mathematicians attribute aesthetic properties to mathematical proofs. We demonstrate (...)
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  32. Experimental Philosophy: Impossible Metaphors.Hanna Kim - 2018 - Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy 38:3-11.
    In his 2005 paper, DeClercq observes that aesthetic terms such as ‘beautiful’, ‘elegant’, ‘harmonious’, etc. resist metaphorical interpreta­tion and argues that it is the fact that such terms cannot be involved in category-mistakes that explains their metaphorical uninterpretability. While I largely agree with DeClercq’s observation of the metaphorical uninterpret­ability of aesthetic terms, I offer both non-empirical and empirical considerations against his category-based explanation of the phenomenon. I offer the former in a longer version of this paper. In this shorter version, (...)
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  33. An Empirical Investigation of Guilty Pleasures.Kris Goffin & Florian Cova - 2019 - Philosophical Psychology 32 (7):1129-1155.
    ABSTRACTIn everyday language, the expression ‘guilty pleasure’ refers to instances where one feels bad about enjoying a particular artwork. Thus, one’s experience of guilty pleasure seems to involv...
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  34. Aesthetic Experts.Tereza Hadravová - 2019 - Espes 8 (2):27-36.
    In the 1990s and early 2000s, researchers in the field of so-called neuoaesthetics recruited research subjects who had been untrained in arts and did not have any pronounced interest in aesthetic matters for their laboratory experiments. The prevalent choice of research subjects has recently changed. Currently, a great number of studies uses subjects who are professionally engaged in the art world. In my paper, I describe, analyze, and critically discuss the two research paradigms regarding the subjects involved in the experiments (...)
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  35. De Pulchritudine Non Est Disputandum? A Cross‐Cultural Investigation of the Alleged Intersubjective Validity of Aesthetic Judgment.Florian Cova, Christopher Y. Olivola, Edouard Machery, Stephen Stich, David Rose, Mario Alai, Adriano Angelucci, Renatas Berniūnas, Emma E. Buchtel, Amita Chatterjee, Hyundeuk Cheon, In-Rae Cho, Daniel Cohnitz, Vilius Dranseika, Ángeles E. Lagos, Laleh Ghadakpour, Maurice Grinberg, Ivar Hannikainen, Takaaki Hashimoto, Amir Horowitz, Evgeniya Hristova, Yasmina Jraissati, Veselina Kadreva, Kaori Karasawa, Hackjin Kim, Yeonjeong Kim, Minwoo Lee, Carlos Mauro, Masaharu Mizumoto, Sebastiano Moruzzi, Jorge Ornelas, Barbara Osimani, Carlos Romero, Alejandro Rosas, Massimo Sangoi, Andrea Sereni, Sarah Songhorian, Paulo Sousa, Noel Struchiner, Vera Tripodi, Naoki Usui, Alejandro V. del Mercado, Giorgio Volpe, Hrag A. Vosgerichian, Xueyi Zhang & Jing Zhu - 2019 - Mind and Language 34 (3):317-338.
    Since at least Hume and Kant, philosophers working on the nature of aesthetic judgment have generally agreed that common sense does not treat aesthetic judgments in the same way as typical expressions of subjective preferences—rather, it endows them with intersubjective validity, the property of being right or wrong regardless of disagreement. Moreover, this apparent intersubjective validity has been taken to constitute one of the main explananda for philosophical accounts of aesthetic judgment. But is it really the case that most people (...)
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  36. Is Beauty in the Folk Intuition of the Beholder? Some Thoughts on Experimental Philosophy and Aesthetics.Emanuele Arielli - 2018 - Rivista di Estetica 69:21-39.
    In this paper I will discuss some issues related to a recent trend in experimental philosophy (or x-phi), and try to show the reasons of its late (and scarce) involvement with aesthetics, compared to other areas of philosophical investigation. In order to do this, it is first necessary to ask how an autonomous experimental philosophy of aesthetics could be related to the long-standing tradition of psychological experimental aesthetics. After distinguishing between a “narrow” and a “broad” approach of experimental philosophy, I (...)
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  37. Dual Character Art Concepts.Shen‐yi Liao, Aaron Meskin & Joshua Knobe - 2020 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 101 (1):102-128.
    Our goal in this paper is to articulate a novel account of the ordinary concept ART. At the core of our account is the idea that a puzzle surrounding our thought and talk about art is best understood as just one instance of a far broader phenomenon. In particular, we claim that one can make progress on this puzzle by drawing on research from cognitive science on dual character concepts. Thus, we suggest that the very same sort of phenomenon that (...)
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  38. The Beauty (?) of Mathematical Proofs.Catarina Dutilh Novaes - 2019 - In Andrew Aberdein & Matthew Inglis (eds.), Advances in Experimental Philosophy of Logic and Mathematics. London: Bloomsbury Academic. pp. 63-93.
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  39. Advances in Experimental Philosophy of Aesthetics.Florian Cova & Sébastien Réhault (eds.) - 2018 - Bloomsbury Academic.
    Experimental philosophy has blossomed into a variety of philosophical fields including ethics, epistemology, metaphysics and philosophy of language. But there has been very little experimental philosophical research in the domain of philosophical aesthetics. Advances to Experimental Philosophy of Aesthetics introduces this burgeoning research field, presenting it both in its unity and diversity, and determining the nature and methods of an experimental philosophy of aesthetics. Addressing a wide variety of empirical claims that are of interest to philosophers and psychologists, a team (...)
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  40. Aphantasia and the Decay of Mental Images.Steve Humbert-Droz - 2019 - In Florian Cova & Sébastien Réhault (eds.), Advances in Experimental Philosophy of Aesthetics. Londres, Royaume-Uni: Bloomsbury Academic. pp. 167-174.
    Testimonies about aphantasia are still surprisingly rare, more than a century after Galton. It is therefore difficult to understand how a person devoid of (a kind of) imagination actually thinks. In order to outline "what it is like" to be aphantasic, I will start by compiling two qualitative interviews with aphantasics that I will then compare with other testimonies collected in literature and online. The fact that aphantasia is poorly documented may also explain why few philosophers (with the notable exception (...)
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  41. A Defence of Experimental Philosophy in Aesthetics.Clotilde Torregrossa - 2017 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy:1-23.
    Although experimental philosophy is now over a decade old, it has only recently been introduced to the domain of philosophical aesthetics. So why is there already a need to defend it? Because, as I argue in this paper, we can anticipate the three main types of objection generally addressed to experimental philosophy and show that none of them concern experimental philosophers in aesthetics. I begin with some general considerations about experimental philosophy and its, sometimes conflicting, characteristics. This framework is designed (...)
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  42. Estimating the Reproducibility of Experimental Philosophy.Florian Cova, Brent Strickland, Angela Abatista, Aurélien Allard, James Andow, Mario Attie, James Beebe, Renatas Berniūnas, Jordane Boudesseul, Matteo Colombo, Fiery Cushman, Rodrigo Diaz, Noah N’Djaye Nikolai van Dongen, Vilius Dranseika, Brian D. Earp, Antonio Gaitán Torres, Ivar Hannikainen, José V. Hernández-Conde, Wenjia Hu, François Jaquet, Kareem Khalifa, Hanna Kim, Markus Kneer, Joshua Knobe, Miklos Kurthy, Anthony Lantian, Shen-yi Liao, Edouard Machery, Tania Moerenhout, Christian Mott, Mark Phelan, Jonathan Phillips, Navin Rambharose, Kevin Reuter, Felipe Romero, Paulo Sousa, Jan Sprenger, Emile Thalabard, Kevin Tobia, Hugo Viciana, Daniel Wilkenfeld & Xiang Zhou - 2018 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology (1):1-36.
    Responding to recent concerns about the reliability of the published literature in psychology and other disciplines, we formed the X-Phi Replicability Project to estimate the reproducibility of experimental philosophy. Drawing on a representative sample of 40 x-phi studies published between 2003 and 2015, we enlisted 20 research teams across 8 countries to conduct a high-quality replication of each study in order to compare the results to the original published findings. We found that x-phi studies – as represented in our sample (...)
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  43. The Ontology of Musical Works and the Role of Intuitions: An Experimental Study.Christopher Bartel - 2018 - European Journal of Philosophy 26 (1):348-367.
    Philosophers of music often appeal to intuition to defend ontological theories of musical works. This practice is worrisome as it is rather unclear just how widely shared are the intuitions that philosophers appeal to. In this paper, I will first offer a brief overview of the debate over the ontology of musical works. I will argue that this debate is driven by a conflict between two seemingly plausible intuitions—the repeatability intuition and the creatability intuition—both of which may be defended on (...)
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  44. The Content-Dependence of Imaginative Resistance.Hanna Kim, Markus Kneer & Michael T. Stuart - 2018 - In Florian Cova & Sébastien Réhault (eds.), Advances in Experimental Philosophy of Aesthetics. London: Bloomsbury. pp. 143-166.
    An observation of Hume’s has received a lot of attention over the last decade and a half: Although we can standardly imagine the most implausible scenarios, we encounter resistance when imagining propositions at odds with established moral (or perhaps more generally evaluative) convictions. The literature is ripe with ‘solutions’ to this so-called ‘Puzzle of Imaginative Resistance’. Few, however, question the plausibility of the empirical assumption at the heart of the puzzle. In this paper, we explore empirically whether the difficulty we (...)
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  45. Genre Moderates Morality’s Influence on Aesthetics.Shen-yi Liao - manuscript
    The present studies investigate morality’s influence on aesthetics and one potential moderator of that influence: genre. Study 1 finds that people’s moral evaluation positively influence their aesthetic evaluation of an artwork. Study 2 and 3 finds that this influence can be moderated by the contextual factor of genre. These results broaden our understanding of the relationship between morality and aesthetics, and suggest that models of art appreciation should take into account morality and its interaction with context. [Unpublishable 2010-2017.].
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  46. Experimental Philosophical Aesthetics as Public Philosophy.Aaron Meskin & Shen-yi Liao - 2018 - In Sébastien Réhault & Florian Cova (eds.), Advances in Experimental Philosophy of Aesthetics. New York: Bloomsbury. pp. 309-326.
    Experimental philosophy offers an alternative mode of engagement for public philosophy, in which the public can play a participatory role. We organized two public events on the aesthetics of coffee that explored this alternative mode of engagement. The first event focuses on issues surrounding the communication of taste. The second event focuses on issues concerning ethical influences on taste. -/- In this paper, we report back on these two events which explored the possibility of doing experimental philosophical aesthetics as public (...)
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  47. Aesthetic Adjectives Lack Uniform Behavior.Shen-yi Liao, Louise McNally & Aaron Meskin - 2016 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 59 (6):618-631.
    The goal of this short paper is to show that esthetic adjectives—exemplified by “beautiful” and “elegant”—do not pattern stably on a range of linguistic diagnostics that have been used to taxonomize the gradability properties of adjectives. We argue that a plausible explanation for this puzzling data involves distinguishing two properties of gradable adjectives that have been frequently conflated: whether an adjective’s applicability is sensitive to a comparison class, and whether an adjective’s applicability is context-dependent.
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  48. Aesthetic Adjectives: Experimental Semantics and Context-Sensitivity.Shen-yi Liao & Aaron Meskin - 2017 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 94 (2):371–398.
    One aim of this essay is to contribute to understanding aesthetic communication—the process by which agents aim to convey thoughts and transmit knowledge about aesthetic matters to others. Our focus will be on the use of aesthetic adjectives in aesthetic communication. Although theorists working on the semantics of adjectives have developed sophisticated theories about gradable adjectives, they have tended to avoid studying aesthetic adjectives—the class of adjectives that play a central role in expressing aesthetic evaluations. And despite the wealth of (...)
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