Cognitive Narratology Cover Image

Когнитивна наратологија
Cognitive Narratology

Author(s): Snežana Milosavljević-Milić
Subject(s): Studies of Literature, Theory of Literature
Published by: Институт за књижевност и уметност
Keywords: cognitive narratology;story world;frames;scenarios;scalar approach;narrativity level;mind theory;immersion;

Summary/Abstract: Cognitive narratology appeared in the 1980’s within the narrative turn in humanities and the cognitive turn in various scientific disciplines, as part of so-called «post-classical narratology» . Cognitive narratology investigates how the narrative creates human experience and gives meaning to it, the basis of the human universal yearning for narration and reception of stories, the patterns participating in their processing/interpretation. While the classical period narratology relied mostly on Saussurean linguistics, now the incentives arrive from cognitive linguistics, cognitive psychology, neurology, evolution theory, philosophy of the mind, quantum physics. The three key conceptual paradigms are: frames and scripts, the scalar approach and elimination of binary oppositions, and the story world. Frames are cognitive structures of knowledge that represent the basis for conceptual images of the world, while scripts or scenarios represent stereotypical sequences of events, some sort of schematized action determined by the frame. The emphasised interest for the literary character and the theory of immersion were directly inspired by psychological investigations linked to the theory of mind, also known as «mind reading». The abandoning of binary oppositions (story - discourse, narrative - experiencing self, real - implicit author, fictional - fact-based), is most obviously manifested in the transition from the term «narrative» to its characteristic - «narrativity». In order to stress dynamism and processuality, Werner Wolf) introduces scalar schemes when discussing description as a cognitive style, i.e. when he views narrative frames not as stable morphological categories but rather as cognitive meta-concepts that participate in the coding of different text levels. The definition of narrative as a cognitive, transdisciplinary, transhistorical, transgeneric and transmedial phenomenon leads to a branching-out of cognitive narratology, and today we discern affective, natural, unnatural and transmedial narratology. Cognitive narratology is usually criticized because of essentialism and reductionism of the teleological thinking, while its most important advantages are the interdisciplinary approach, the empirical basis, as well as adapting to an integrative method when combined with other literary theories or methods.

  • Issue Year: 47/2015
  • Issue No: 155
  • Page Range: 11-23
  • Page Count: 13
  • Language: Serbian