Cognitive Approaches to Early Modern Spanish Literature

ISBN : 9780190256555

Isabel Jaen; Julien Jacques Simon
256 Pages
156 x 235 mm
Pub date
Jun 2016
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Cognitive Approaches to Early Modern Spanish Literature is the first anthology exploring human cognition and literature in the context of early modern Spanish culture. It includes the leading voices in the field, along with the main themes and directions that this important area of study has been producing. The book begins with an overview of the cognitive literary studies research that has been taking place within early modern Spanish studies over the last fifteen years. Next, it traces the creation of self in the context of the novel, focusing on Cervantes's Don Quixote in relation to the notions of embodiment and autopoiesis as well as the faculties of memory and imagination as understood in early modernity. It continues to explore the concept of embodiment, showing its relevance to delve into the mechanics of the interaction between actors and audience both in the jongleuresque and the comedia traditions. It then centers on cognitive theories of perception, the psychology of immersion in fictional worlds, and early modern and modern-day notions of intentionality to discuss the role of perceiving and understanding others in performance, Don Quixote, and courtly conduct manuals. The last section focuses on the affective dimension of audience-performer interactions in the theatrical space of the Spanish corrales and how emotion and empathy can inform new approaches to presenting Las Casas's work in the literature classroom. The volume closes with an afterword offering strategies to design a course on mind and literature in early modernity.


Isabel Jaen and Julien J. Simon
Section I - An Overview of Cognitive Approaches to Early Modern Spanish Literature
1. Contextualizing Cognitive Approaches to Early Modern Spanish Literature
Julien J. Simon
Section II - The Creation of Self
2. Embodied Cognition and Autopoiesis in Don Quixote
Howard Mancing
3. Why Autopoiesis and Memory Matter to Cervantes, Don Quixote, and the Humanities
Catherine Connor-Swietlicki
4. The Janus Hypothesis in Don Quixote: Memory and Imagination in Cervantes
Julia Dominguez
Section III - Embodied Cognition and Performance
5. Cognitive Theatricality: Jongleuresque Imagination on the Early Spanish Stage
Bruce Burningham
6. A Mindful Audience: Embodied Spectatorship in Early Modern Madrid
Elizabeth M. Cruz Petersen
Section IV - Perceiving and Understanding Others
7. Wearing Gender on One's Sleeve: Cross-dressing in Angela de Azevedo's El muerto disimulado
Judith Caballero
8. Don Quixote's Response to Fiction in Maese Pedro's Puppet Show: Madman or Transported Reader?
Domingo Rodenas de Moya and Jose Valenzuela
9. Theory of Mind in Early Modern Spanish Manuals of Courtly Conduct
Ryan Schmitz
Section V - Feeling and Ethics
10. Embodiment and Empathy in Early Modern Drama: The Case of Cervantes's El trato de Argel
Cory A. Reed
11. The Role of Empathy in Reading, Interpreting, and Teaching Las Casas's Brevisima relacion de la destruccion de las Indias
Barbara Simerka
Teaching Early Modern Spanish Literature with a Cognitive Approach
Isabel Jaen

About the author: 

Isabel Jaen is Associate Professor of Spanish at Portland State University. She is co-founder and co-coordinator of the Literary Theory, Cognition, and the Brain working group at the Whitney Humanities Center in Yale University and former executive member of the Cognitive Approaches to Literature Division of the MLA (chair in 2011). She is co-editor of Cognitive Literary Studies and has recently published on Cervantes and human development, cognitive approaches to teaching Don Quixote, and empathy and gender activism in Zayas' Amorous and Exemplary Novels, among other topics.; Julien J. Simon is Associate Professor of Spanish and French at Indiana University East. He is co-founder of the Literary Theory, Cognition, and the Brain working group at the Whitney Humanities Center in Yale University (2005), former member of the executive committee for the MLA Division on Cognitive Approaches to Literature (chair in 2013), and former steering committee member of the Center for Cognitive Literary Studies at Purdue University. He has recently co-edited Cognitive Literary Studies and the special cluster Cognitive Cervantes of the Bulletin of the Cervantes Society of America.

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