Thursday, March 22, 2012

What happens when we read fiction

This is a cool article about what happens in our brain when we read fiction (click here). In a nutshell, we actually experience what we read (we smell the vanilla cookies, we feel the cold, we imagine we're running on the beach). Books are like computer simulations of real life:

Fiction, Dr. Oatley notes, “is a particularly useful simulation because negotiating the social world effectively is extremely tricky, requiring us to weigh up myriad interacting instances of cause and effect. Just as computer simulations can help us get to grips with complex problems such as flying a plane or forecasting the weather, so novels, stories and dramas can help us understand the complexities of social life.”

So, when you read a romantic novel, you learn to love better. And you get to experience the kisses. Right? :-)

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