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Journal Articles Cognition and Emotion Year : 2023

Fluctuation in cognitive engagement during listening and reading of erotica and horror stories

Abstract

The present study examined whether emotional text content influences cognitive engagement and transportation during listening (Experiment 1) and reading (Experiment 2) of neutral, horror and erotic stories. In Experiment 1, fluctuation in arousal and cognitive engagement were measured by continuous arousal judgments and head movement recordings during story listening. Participants rated experienced transportation and emotional valence after each story. The results showed that emotional texts were more arousing and induced more transportation than neutral stories. There was less head motion overall and a steeper decrease in head motion across time for erotic than neutral or horror stories. In Experiment 2, participants’ head movements and reading times were recorded during reading, and participants rated experienced transportation, arousal, and valence after each text. The results showed that emotional texts were more arousing and induced higher transportation than neutral stories. There was less head motion during reading of erotic than neutral or horror texts. Horror texts were read slower and recalled better than neutral or erotic texts. The present results show that emotional text content impacts cognitive engagement during listening and reading of literary texts and demonstrates the importance of methodological triangulation when examining cognitive engagement.
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Dates and versions

hal-04116993 , version 1 (08-06-2023)

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Ugo Ballenghein, Johanna K Kaakinen, Geoffrey Tissier, Thierry Baccino. Fluctuation in cognitive engagement during listening and reading of erotica and horror stories. Cognition and Emotion, 2023, pp.1-17. ⟨10.1080/02699931.2023.2215974⟩. ⟨hal-04116993⟩
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