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The Mind and its Stories
Narrative Universals and Human Emotion


Part of Studies in Emotion and Social Interaction

  • Date Published: May 2009
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521111416

£ 35.99

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About the Authors
  • There are profound, extensive, and surprising universals in literature, which are bound up with universals in emotion. Hogan maintains that debates over the cultural specificity of emotion are misdirected because they have ignored a vast body of data that bear directly on the way different cultures imagine and experience emotion - literature. This is the first empirically and cognitively based discussion of narrative universals. Professor Hogan argues that, to a remarkable degree, the stories people admire in different cultures follow a limited number of patterns and that these patterns are determined by cross-culturally constant ideas about emotion. In formulating his argument, Professor Hogan draws on his extensive reading in world literature, experimental research treating emotion and emotion concepts, and methodological principles from the contemporary linguistics and the philosophy of science. He concludes with a discussion of the relations among narrative, emotion concepts, and the biological and social components of emotion.

    • Presents an empirically based and detailed argument for the existence of particular narrative universals
    • New account of emotion concepts based on narrative universals, and is therefore particularly broad in its explanatory scope
    • Wide range of universals, but also gives culture a considerable role, explaining that universals can arise from cultural necessities and biology
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Hogan's work usefully compares non-Europeans and 'Euro-American' conceptions of literary universals.' Year's Work in Critical and Cultural Theory

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2009
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521111416
    • length: 320 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 18 mm
    • weight: 0.47kg
    • contains: 1 table
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction: studying narrative, studying emotion
    1. Literary universals
    2. Emotion and suggestion: lexical processes in literary experience
    3. Four hypotheses on emotion and narrative
    4. Writing beyond the ending: a problem of narrative, empathy, and ethics
    5. Extending the theory: emotion prototypes, narrative junctures, and lyric poetry
    6. Testing, revision, and the program of research in narrative universals: Ainu epic and the plot of sacrifice
    7. The structure of stories: some general principles of plot
    Afterword: from the emotional nature of narrative to the narrative nature of emotion

  • Author

    Patrick Colm Hogan, University of Connecticut

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