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Art, Aesthetics, and the Brain$
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Joseph P. Huston, Marcos Nadal, Francisco Mora, Luigi F. Agnati, and Camilo José Cela Conde

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199670000

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199670000.001.0001

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Tension–resolution patterns as a key element of aesthetic experience: Psychological principles and underlying brain mechanisms

Tension–resolution patterns as a key element of aesthetic experience: Psychological principles and underlying brain mechanisms

Chapter:
(p.285) Chapter 14 Tension–resolution patterns as a key element of aesthetic experience: Psychological principles and underlying brain mechanisms
Source:
Art, Aesthetics, and the Brain
Author(s):

Moritz Lehne

Stefan Koelsch

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199670000.003.0014

In a wide variety of art forms (especially in temporal art such as music, film, or literature), the aesthetic emotional experience of perceivers is orchestrated by patterns of tension and resolution. Studying these tension–resolution patterns promises new insights into aesthetic emotions and emotional experience in general. This chapter explores general psychological principles by which tension–resolution patterns evoke aesthetic emotions. In particular, processes of expectancy, prediction, and anticipation are identified as key factors mediating experiences of tension and resolution. The special case of musical tension is considered in more detail and possible brain mechanisms underlying tension experiences in music are discussed.

Keywords:   tension–resolution patterns, music, aesthetic emotion, prediction, expectancy

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