Norm theory: Comparing reality to its alternatives

@article{Kahneman1986NormTC,
  title={Norm theory: Comparing reality to its alternatives},
  author={Daniel Kahneman and Dale T. Miller},
  journal={Psychological Review},
  year={1986},
  volume={93},
  pages={136-153}
}
A theory of norms and normality is presented and applied to some phenomena of emotional responses, social judgment, and conversations about causes. Norms are assumed to be constructed ad hoc by recruiting specific representations. Category norms are derived by recruiting exemplars. Specific objects or events generate their own norms by retrieval of similar experiences stored in memory or by construction of counterfactual alternatives. The normality of a stimulus is evaluated by comparing it to… 

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