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Journal Article

Personality traits and reading habits that predict absorbed narrative fiction reading.


Kuijpers,  Moniek
Max Planck Institute for Empirical Aesthetics, Max Planck Society;

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Kuijpers, M., Douglas, S., & Kuiken, D. (2019). Personality traits and reading habits that predict absorbed narrative fiction reading. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, 13(1), 74-88. doi:10.1037/aca0000168.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0003-14C6-7
Even though the experience of narrative absorption has been studied extensively in recent years, relatively little is known about the personality traits of readers who regularly become absorbed while reading narrative fiction. The present study investigated which personality traits predict absorbed reading, with particular attention to the components of the Tellegen Absorption Scale (TAS; Tellegen & Atkinson, 1974) that do so. In an online survey study, introductory psychology students (N = 264) described their most memorable reading experience from the last year and elaborated on that experience by completing the Story World Absorption Scale (Kuijpers, Hakemulder, Tan, & Doicaru, 2014) and the Absorption-like States Questionnaire (Kuiken & Douglas, 2017). In addition, they were asked to complete several personality questionnaires (the TAS; Need for Cognition, Cacioppo, & Petty, 1982; Openness to Experience, DeYoung, Quilty, & Peterson, 2007; Emotional Coping, Stanton, Kirk, Cameron & Danoff-Burg, 2000) and to answer questions about their reading habits. The results indicate that (1) the chosen personality measures reflect closely related but distinct aspects of “global openness to experience,” (2) the effects of personality traits on absorbed reading are generally mediated by reading habits, and (3) sustained concentration and attentional flexibility are generic aspects of several absorption-like states predicted by trait measures of openness to experience. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)