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Abstract

Understanding others’ mental states is a crucial skill that enables the complex social relationships that characterize human societies. Yet little research has investigated what fosters this skill, which is known as Theory of Mind (ToM), in adults. We present five experiments showing that reading literary fiction led to better performance on tests of affective ToM (experiments 1 to 5) and cognitive ToM (experiments 4 and 5) compared with reading nonfiction (experiments 1), popular fiction (experiments 2 to 5), or nothing at all (experiments 2 and 5). Specifically, these results show that reading literary fiction temporarily enhances ToM. More broadly, they suggest that ToM may be influenced by engagement with works of art.
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... Finally, pleasure reading does more than build language and literacy and increase knowledge. Those who read more, especially fiction, have a deeper understanding of other people; they have more empathy (Kidd and Castano, 2013). ...
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https://www.alternator.science/sl/daljse/kaj-je-branje-z-vidika-nevrokognitivne-literarne-vede/
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