New PDF release: A Cognitive Approach to John Donne’s Songs and Sonnets

Cognitive Psychology

By M. Winkleman, Michael A. Winkelman

ISBN-10: 1137348747

ISBN-13: 9781137348746

ISBN-10: 1349455946

ISBN-13: 9781349455942

Investigations into how the mind truly works have resulted in awesome discoveries and those findings hold profound implications for analyzing literature. This examine applies contemporary breakthroughs from neuroscience and evolutionary psychology so that it will deepen our knowing of John Donne's Songs and Sonnets.

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Extra info for A Cognitive Approach to John Donne’s Songs and Sonnets

Sample text

But to all but the biggest spoilsports, Dyer’s line rings true today, four centuries after he penned it and over two centuries since the American Colonies dispensed with British rule. Anybody with an ounce of introspection will identify with Dyer. Our memories, feelings, dilemmas, and worries; our fondest hopes and dreams; our Alexandrian libraries filled with snippets of favorite songs, movie scenes, and cartoons; our virtual photo albums and soundtracks archiving our exes; our psychosomatic sensations and phenomenological perceptions; our innermost apprehensions and lusts; our nagging doubts and cold-blooded terrors— all these make for a vast landscape to wander around in where the “I” reigns (though not absolutely).

There is a ways to go, but it is becoming apparent that language usage and metaphorical thinking are both pleiotropic, arising from the expression of numerous genes and the complex interactions of various cortical regions plus environmental factors. At present, inquiry into this related matrix of questions draws from both positive experimental neuroscience and more inferential imaginative work in “humane learning and languages” (Selected Letters, 36). An understanding of metaphor has not yet been put upon such firm foundations as other physiological items such as epidemiology or vision, but headway is being made into this vital aspect of human thinking.

21 Howsoever it started, this noetic enhancement became an essential component of our humanity. Certainly more than a single simile gene or unique likeness synapse is involved. 22 Famous examples of discovery via analogy are nineteenth-century chemist Friedrich August Kekulé daydreaming of the Ouroboros, the snake swallowing its own tail, leading to his determination of the structure of the benzene ring; Ernest Rutherford’s atomic structure modeled on planets orbiting the sun; or early in the twentieth century, Louis de Broglie and Max Planck applying principles of acoustics to come up with the theory of electron waves.

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A Cognitive Approach to John Donne’s Songs and Sonnets by M. Winkleman, Michael A. Winkelman


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