Art enhances meaning by stimulating integrative complexity and aesthetic interest

Henrik Hagtvedt, Kathleen D. Vohs

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate


Menninghaus et al. portrayed meaning in art as a vehicle for transforming negative emotions into pleasure. Although it is intuitively appealing that meaningful experiences should feel good, meaningfulness does not necessarily entail pleasure or positive emotions. Whereas easily comprehended art may elicit pleasure, meaningfulness is more closely tied to challenge and interest than to pleasure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e364
JournalThe Behavioral and brain sciences
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017


Cite this