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Psyche
14 mins | May 13, 2020

A touch of absurdity can help to wrap your mind around reality

Juxtaposing the uncanny with the familiar helps us challenge our understanding of the world. "Clues to the appeal of this kind of art come from recent work by psychologists, who are beginning to understand the strange effects it can have on the brain. According to research on the 'meaning maintenance model' of human reasoning, surreal and absurd art can be so unsettling that the brain reacts as if it is feeling physical pain, yet it ultimately leads us to reaffirm who we are, and sharpens the mind as we look for new ways to make sense of the world." Science writer David Robson contemplates in Psyche magazine.

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