Decontaminating Taste: Minimizing Nona esthetic Biases in Aesthetic Appraisal
Duane E. Lundy

Following work by scholars across academic disciplines and wide-ranging time periods, such as Hume, Kant, Burt, and Eysenck, this paper represents a review of theory and research on the nature of aesthetic appraisal, and ultimately theorizes about the tendencies that need to be avoided in order to become a better expert who can make defendable judgments of aesthetic works. Evidence exists that many biases commonly operate in aesthetic judgment, especially among laypersons, and these biases end up contaminating potentially valid appraisals of artworks, and ultimately the acclaim and success of artists in a society. In total, by identifying complementary concepts within social and cognitive psychology, philosophy, and sociology, eleven such biases are documented and discussed. There also appear to be parallels between the perceptual and cognitive heuristic processes that occur in more general human decision making and judgment, and those that can occur in biased art perception and evaluation. Especially notable are stereotyping and prejudiced tendencies that commonly exist in aesthetic judgments.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/rah.v5n1a2