Cognition, Literature, and History

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Mark J. Bruhn, Donald R. Wehrs
Routledge, 2014 - Literary Criticism - 271 pages
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"Cognition, Literature and History models the ways in which cognitive and literary studies may collaborate and thereby mutually advance. This volume integrates cognitive-scientific research with literary-historical concerns in order to show how understanding of underlying structures of mind can productively inform literary analysis and historical inquiry, and how formal and historical analysis of distinctive literary works can reciprocally enrich our understanding of those underlying structures. Applying the cognitive neuroscience of categorization, emotion, figurative thinking, narrativity, self-awareness, theory of mind, and wayfinding to the study of literary works and genres from diverse historical periods and cultures, the authors argue that literary experience proceeds from, qualitatively heightens, and selectively informs and even reforms our evolved and embodied capacities for thought and feeling. This volume investigates and locates the complex intersections of cognition, literature and history in order to advance interdisciplinary discussion and research in poetics, literary history, and cognitive science"--

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About the author (2014)

Mark J. Bruhn is Professor of English at Regis University. His recent studies of literary cognition include two articles in a 2011 special double-issue of Poetics Today on "Exchange Values: Poetics and Cognitive Science," which he guest-edited, and a chapter in the forthcoming Oxford Handbook of Cognitive Literary Studies.

Donald R. Wehrs is Hargis Professor of British Literature at Auburn University, editor of Levinas and Twentieth-Century Literature (Delaware, 2013), co-editor (with David P. Haney) of Levinas and Nineteenth-Century Literature (Delaware, 2009), and author of three monographs on 20th-century African fiction and over thirty essays on critical theory and comparative literature.

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