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  1. Objects of "empathy" : characters (and other such things) as psycho-poetic effects
    Erschienen: 26.03.2013

    In folk theories of art reception, readers and cinema audiences are said to experience fictional worlds vicariously 'through' characters, i.e. they 'identify' themselves with them, they partake in their experiences 'empathetically'. In the first... mehr

     

    In folk theories of art reception, readers and cinema audiences are said to experience fictional worlds vicariously 'through' characters, i.e. they 'identify' themselves with them, they partake in their experiences 'empathetically'. In the first section of my essay, I will argue that it is not character but focalization (point of view) which, on a fundamental level, guides our fictional experience, and I will exemplify several ways that characters (or similar ideas) can then in addition come into play. In the next two sections, I will discuss possible cognitive correlates of both the textual device of focalization and textual clues indicating ›persons‹. The aim is to show that what I call ›psycho-poetic effects‹ (that is, the mental representation of anthropomorphic instances) are best described as byproducts of various cognitive programs involved in the reception of narrative fiction. 'Empathy', as it is understood in the above mentioned folk theory of art reception, can then be analysed into individual algorithms of social cognition. And it can be differentiated, as is done in the last section, from other phenomena often confused with it, like emotional experience proper and emotional contagion. Also, I refer to the idea that mirror neurons provide the means to empathize with others, literary characters included. My general proposition is to revise and refine those concepts with the help of evolutionary theory and, thus, to hypothesize as cognitive correlates for textual features only programs specific enough to be correlated with a specific adaptive function which they may have performed in the process of human evolution.

     

    Hinweise zum Inhalt: kostenfrei
    Quelle: CompaRe
    Sprache: Englisch
    Medientyp: Teil eines Buches (Kapitel)
    Format: Online
    ISBN: 978-3-11-023241-7
    DDC Klassifikation: Literatur und Rhetorik (800); Literaturtheorie (801)
    Lizenz: Veröffentlichungsvertrag für Publikationen
  2. Diabolus ex machina : Bulgakov's modernist devil
    Erschienen: 30.12.2014

    In 1937, when Bulgakov was working on Master i Margarita and suffering from rejection by the theatre community, an old friend appealed to him: "Вы ведь государство в государстве. Сколько это может продолжаться? Надо сдаваться, все сдались. Один вы... mehr

     

    In 1937, when Bulgakov was working on Master i Margarita and suffering from rejection by the theatre community, an old friend appealed to him: "Вы ведь государство в государстве. Сколько это может продолжаться? Надо сдаваться, все сдались. Один вы остались. Это глупо." And indeed "государство в государстве" ("a state within a state") is an appropriate way of describing a man who was feverishly working on a modernist novel at the height of socialist realism. The very fact that Master i Margarita was written in the oppressive environment of the 1930s makes it a unique modernist work, for it emerges as a protest against socialist realism and a defense of artistic freedom. In this respect the modernist qualities of Bulgakov's novel acquire a new dimension because Master i Margarita becomes a kind of artistic devil, fulfilling the traditional diabolic role of opposing authority. This is why Woland, as a character, is the metonymic expression of the novel's revolt.

     

    Hinweise zum Inhalt: kostenfrei
    Quelle: CompaRe
    Sprache: Englisch
    Medientyp: Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
    Format: Online
    Lizenz: Veröffentlichungsvertrag für Publikationen
  3. De-automatization in Timothy Findley's "The Wars"
    Erschienen: 30.12.2014

    Timothy Findley's "The Wars" is a very powerful and disturbing book. Despite the novel's historically distant setting, the events of "The Wars" do not seem distant at all: the reader is brought close to the horrible violence of World War I and its... mehr

     

    Timothy Findley's "The Wars" is a very powerful and disturbing book. Despite the novel's historically distant setting, the events of "The Wars" do not seem distant at all: the reader is brought close to the horrible violence of World War I and its devastating impact on a young mind. The question is why? The topic is certainly not new — we are аll too familiar with the World War I period. The theme is also an old one — a young man's loss of innocence and baptism by fire on the battlefield. The novelty and vividness of Findley's work are attributable to another source: its form. I hope to show that one artistic device in particular — de-automatization — is largely responsible for the novel's powerful impact on the modern reader.

     

    Hinweise zum Inhalt: kostenfrei
    Quelle: CompaRe
    Sprache: Englisch
    Medientyp: Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
    Format: Online
    DDC Klassifikation: Literatur und Rhetorik (800)
    Lizenz: Veröffentlichungsvertrag für Publikationen
  4. V. M. Garshin : a pioneer of direct interior monologue

    Vsevolod M. Garshin's story "Four Days" ("Четыре дня") made the author famous when it was published in 1877. Intended as a strong anti·war statement and based on a true incident during the Russian-Turkish war (1877-78), "Four Days" is the interior... mehr

     

    Vsevolod M. Garshin's story "Four Days" ("Четыре дня") made the author famous when it was published in 1877. Intended as a strong anti·war statement and based on a true incident during the Russian-Turkish war (1877-78), "Four Days" is the interior monologue of a wounded soldier left for dead on an empty battlefield. His last name, Ivanov, which is traditionally considered to be the most common one in Russia, may suggest the idea of "everyman" in order to generalize the protagonists terrible experience on the battlefield into a broad anti-war message. The protagonist finds himself pinned down next to 0the body of a Turkish soldier whom he had killed just before being wounded. Forced to look at the corpse for a long time, Ivanov experiences terrible guilt, since he has never killed before. After four days of physical and mental agony, during which Ivanov reassesses his formerly idealistic attitude toward war and ends up condemning it as something far from glorious and noble, the protagonist is found by his regiment, and, unlike his real-life prototype, he survives (Henry. 47). Throughout the text we do not lave the confines of the protagonist's mind; as a result, the intense, relentless focus on his mental and physical anguish created by the interior monologue: immobilized by his wound, he becomes a prisoner of his own mind; as a result, the intense, relentless focus on his mental and physical anguish created by the interior monologue technique enhances the "horrors of war" effect intended by the author. At the same time the war-related situation and setting provide motivation for the wounded man's interior monologue: immobilized by his wound, he becomes a prisoner of his own mind and its therefore forced by circumtances to think through his entire predicament and its causes.

     

    Hinweise zum Inhalt: kostenfrei
    Quelle: CompaRe
    Sprache: Englisch
    Medientyp: Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
    Format: Online
    Lizenz: Veröffentlichungsvertrag für Publikationen
  5. The child and the child-like in Daniil Charms
    Erschienen: 30.12.2014

    In his lifetime Daniil Charms only succeeded in publishing two of his poems for adults. Publicly he was a children's author: a job in the Soviet Union which traditionally attracted many writers whose literature for adults was either rejected by the... mehr

     

    In his lifetime Daniil Charms only succeeded in publishing two of his poems for adults. Publicly he was a children's author: a job in the Soviet Union which traditionally attracted many writers whose literature for adults was either rejected by the official literary system or had to be hidden altogether if its creators wanted to avoid trouble.

    In fact up to the present day it is still Charms the children's author who is best known and loved, although finally under new historical and political conditions the writer for adults has also been allowed to make his debut. However, whatever he wrote, Charms' work was always dominated by an absurdist world view, a view that usually denied all dogma or ideology. His only aim seems to have been to present a world upside down and play around with literary and other conventions, i.e. more than anything else he wanted to be different, acting as a sort of literary "punk".

    Although Charms and his associates were preceded by European absurdist authors, such as A. Jarry (1873-1907), it is very difficult to establish any relationship of influence between examples of Western European absurdism and Daniil Charms. Nonetheless, Charms' work, as well as that of Jarry, Ionesco and Beckett, all share the "grotesquely comic as well as irrational" (Abrams 1981: 1) quality of the absurdist movement in its larger modernist context.

     

    Hinweise zum Inhalt: kostenfrei
    Quelle: CompaRe
    Sprache: Englisch
    Medientyp: Wissenschaftlicher Artikel
    Format: Online
    Lizenz: Veröffentlichungsvertrag für Publikationen