Date Awarded

2017

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)

Department

Psychology

Advisor

Todd Thrash

Committee Member

John Nezlek

Committee Member

Chris Conway

Abstract

Literary theorists have pointed to a relationship between writer-reader personality similarity and better outcomes in the reader. Furthermore, there is empirical evidence indicating that personality similarity between two individuals leads to positive outcomes. We tested the hypothesis that personality similarity between writers and readers predicts greater inspiration in the reader. Our results supported this hypothesis. Profile similarity (i.e., similarity of Big Five trait profile) between writers and readers predicted greater reader inspiration. Single-trait similarity (i.e., similarity of single Big Five traits) between writers and readers predicted greater reader inspiration. These findings are noteworthy because we show that the scientific method can be leveraged to test the verisimilitude of a literary theory, which has not been possible using the current methods of literary criticism.

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/doi:10.21220/S2J082

Rights

© The Author

Available for download on Sunday, October 06, 2019

Included in

Psychology Commons

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