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Different colors for different folks: variety is the spice of life!

How hard can it be to define colors? Human beings, not content with finding names to qualify different hues, also felt the need to talk about "warm" and "cool" colors, light or dark,  neutral or bright shades, "loud" combinations… how do we navigate the myriad of hues that paint the world? Just think of green: sea green, bottle green, emerald green, olive green, acid green. Often, chromatically illiterate as I am, as I listen to normally sighted people talking colors, I happen to think: "come now, do find an agreement!"

Yet, I know an agreement is just not possible. Some cultures, especially in the East, link white with mourning; other just don't recognize certain hues, like the Japanese making little or no distinction between blue and green. And there are normally sighted people who feel perfectly at ease with their inability to match colors, and make it their own style. The case could fit in the age-old aesthetical querelle about the existence of a standard of universal beauty.

The latest studies in psychology of perception show (as could be expected but can be safely repeated), that behind every pair of eyes there is a brain not only reading, but also construing, selecting, filtering, building, evaluating, enjoying or loathing. In other words, a thinking brain. Paola Bressan, in her book "The color of the moon", writes: "The phrase 'world-building' may sound like a poetic license, but is no such thing.

When you look around, you feel you are watching things, not building them: things are out there, and look the way they look, with or without you watching them. Still, this feeling just comes from your building proficiency and speed. Surely, you don't feel you are standing on a floating ball either, rotating 1700 kilometers per hour (at the Equator), and yet this is how things go." (p.119)

Therefore, color belongs in that web of meanings that make our world, meanings that we must in turn not only read, but also construe.  

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