This chapter discusses how systematic, experimental approaches to literary reading have been developed, and considers the questions raised by an empirical approach. The paradigms within which literature is typically studied and taught have ruled against an experimental approach. Readers in the study ranged from beginning students of literature to professors. Readers of literary texts thus appear to draw more explicitly and frequently on their active personal experiences, a process that might be held to distinguish literary from other kinds of texts. Readers notice evaluations because they stand out from the local norm of the text. The evidence against interpretation being an aim of the ordinary reader is rather strong. Shown a list of phrases taken from the story after each page and asked to indicate what they had particularly noticed while reading, readers with the original version chose the evaluation phrases significantly more often than readers with the rewritten version chose the equivalent neutral phrases.