Empowered People’s Aesthetic Preferences Driven by Motor Fluency

Madalina Vlasceanu

Abstract


The current research tested the hypothesis that power increases reliance on experiences of motor fluency when forming aesthetic preferences. This hypothesis was tested in a study that primed participants with either power or powerlessness, manipulated their motor fluency (i.e., by either occupying their dominant hand with an object or not), and then had them report aesthetic preference for another object. Powerful individuals showed a significant difference in their preference for the object depending on whether it was easy for them to imagine interacting with the object or not. As predicted, powerless individuals showed no significant difference in preference mediated by the motor fluency manipulation. The practical implications of this finding applies to a variety of settings (e.g. family, organizational, educational etc.) in which powerful individuals are making decisions that may impact their own and/or other peoples’ lives. 


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