This slideshow is about the effect of typography on emotion (.. check it's works cited! Woot!). It's conclusion? "A well-designed layout encourages positive associates reduces distraction and gives a sense of accomplishment".
Less legible fonts are like a rite of passage for comprehension.
People recall what they've read better when it’s printed in smaller, less legible type, according to a 2010 study (princeton.edu); although small & unusual, low-contrast fonts are is also the #1 complaint for web users relating to reading online (Nielsen, 2005).
For information overload, I highly recommend starting with this synthesis of the effect of typography on user experience
-- it's oriented to web/digital readability, not print, and contains much actionable insight.
Highlight from the synthesis:
Q: Does legibility influence judgement? A: Yes.
If you're still reading this, I know you want more research! This Prezi is exactly what you want; it summarizes a great deal of research and has an epic works cited: Font and Comprehension
Some highlights from the Prezi:
- Larger fonts are also easier for children to read (Wilson, 404)
- Large font sizes decrease the speed of reading for adults (Legge & Bigelow, 7).
- The eye will rest longer on words that are more familiar, and linger on those that are unfamiliar (Slattery & Rayner, 1129)
- Lower case letters are easier to read, because they are more distinctive
- Fonts that have low variation between letters (e.g., Sassoon) see image are more difficult to read for children (Wilson, 406).
See question on Quora