De Pulchritudine non est Disputandum? A cross-cultural investigation of the alleged intersubjective validity of aesthetic judgment

Florian Cova, Christopher Y. Olivola, Edouard Machery, Stephen Stich, David Rose, Mario Alai, Adriano Angelucci, Renatas Berniūnas, Emma E. Buchtel, Amita Chatterjee, Hyundeuk Cheon, In Rae Cho, Daniel Cohnitz, Vilius Dranseika, Ángeles E. Lagos, Laleh Ghadakpour, Maurice Grinberg, Ivar Hannikainen, Takaaki Hashimoto, Amir HorowitzEvgeniya Hristova, Yasmina Jraissati, Veselina Kadreva, Kaori Karasawa, Hackjin Kim, Yeonjeong Kim, Minwoo Lee, Carlos Mauro, Masaharu Mizumoto, Sebastiano Moruzzi, Jorge Ornelas, Barbara Osimani, Carlos Romero, Alejandro Rosas, Massimo Sangoi, Andrea Sereni, Sarah Songhorian, Paulo Sousa, Noel Struchiner, Vera Tripodi, Naoki Usui, Alejandro V. del Mercado, Giorgio Volpe, Hrag A. Vosgerichian, Xueyi Zhang, Jing Zhu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Since at least Hume and Kant, philosophers working on the nature of aesthetic judgment have generally agreed that common sense does not treat aesthetic judgments in the same way as typical expressions of subjective preferences—rather, it endows them with intersubjective validity, the property of being right or wrong regardless of disagreement. Moreover, this apparent intersubjective validity has been taken to constitute one of the main explananda for philosophical accounts of aesthetic judgment. But is it really the case that most people spontaneously treat aesthetic judgments as having intersubjective validity? In this paper, we report the results of a cross-cultural study with over 2,000 respondents spanning 19 countries. Despite significant geographical variations, these results suggest that most people do not treat their own aesthetic judgments as having intersubjective validity. We conclude by discussing the implications of our findings for theories of aesthetic judgment and the purpose of aesthetics in general.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-338
Number of pages22
JournalMind and Language
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd


  • aesthetic judgment
  • aesthetic realism
  • cross-cultural
  • experimental philosophy


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