Differences in the highbrow and lowbrow tastes of library users

This research was conducted by Mikhail Sokolov and Nadezhda Sokolova at European University at Saint Petersburg, Russia


This paper examined data from public libraries in St Petersburg, Russia, to identify whether or not an ‘omnivorous’ reading habit is only associated with people in elite or privileged status groups. The researchers …

How book groups talk about fictional characters as if they were real people

This research was conducted by Alexander Laffer at the University of Birmingham


This paper describes a study of five different book groups as they discussed the actions of characters from the novel The Other Hand by Chris Cleave. Participants tended to talk about the characters as if they were real …

Reading literary fiction improves emotion recognition

This research was conducted by Jessica E. Black and Jennifer L. Barnes at the University of Oklahoma, USA


This study aimed to replicate previous findings that have shown reading literary fiction to enhance people’s Theory of Mind (the ability to infer and reason about our own and others’ beliefs …

By | 6 June 2016 |

Reading fiction is related to developing empathic skills

This research was conducted by P. Matthijs Bal and Martijn Veltkamp at VU University Amsterdam and FrieslandCampina, Deventer, The Netherlands


This study reports two experiments designed to measure changes in readers’ empathic skills over one week by getting participants to read either fiction or non-fiction writing. In the fiction groups …

By | 11 December 2014 |

Reading literary fiction improves people’s theory of mind

This research was conducted by David Comer Kidd and Emanuele Castano at the New School for Social Research, USA


This paper reports the results of five experiments designed to test whether reading literary fiction can improve people’s theory of mind. People with an effective theory of mind have an …

By | 10 April 2014 |