ABSTRACT

The objective approach to aesthetic activity focused on art or literary works as stimuli to be analyzed using appropriate codes. The effects of aesthetic distance were examined in a series of experiments using both visual and literary materials. The Aktualgenese tradition in Gestalt psychology would suggest that aesthetic responses occur even during the earliest moments of perception. Schlegel grounded “aesthetic illusion in imagination” and described the ways that illusion is shaped by events on the theatrical stage. S. J. Schmidt’s contention that aesthetic pleasure results from interpretive efforts was echoed in the study by Gerald C. Cupchik and R. J. Gebotys on pleasure- and interest-based judgments described earlier. The holistic experience of emotion encompasses perceived meanings that are shaped by culture and personal life circumstances and spontaneous physical reactions that echo conditioned memories of earlier episodes.