Cave and Dickinson

Important quotations from Cave on literature:

Literature= “signature of cognition in action” (20).

“Literature is the most far reaching and enduring vehicle…most revealing product and symptom of human cognition” (14).

Mind reading= “the ability to read minds certainly passes through the body…and the fact that all our bodies resonate physically with other bodies, real or imagined” (17). This brings us to “I Felt a Funeral in my Brain”, in which the reader moves with the poet following the procession through imagery.  Dickinson uses imagery in her poem to highlight movement: “creaking”, “mourners…to and fro”, “treading”, “beating like a drum”, etc.

In poetry, this is known as kinesthesia. It gives the poem a sense of natural and physical bodily movement- ex: heart beat, pulse, breathing. Further, it creates a tension along with the movement and images that are both figurative and descriptive.

Cave on kinesis:

Kinesis= “a faint but distant echo in the reader’s own motor response what it takes in sensorimotor terms to preform a highly specific gesture” (29). It’s not symbolic but reflective. Similarly, Dickinson’s imagery reflects emotions and thoughts.

Kinesic reading “brings to the surface something you’ve always felt when you read the text properly, but somehow ignored” (29)…

“a cognitive reading of literary texts then, would seek to uncover the hidden work of rapid inferencing and on-the-wing construction of meaning that makes it possible for an experienced reader…at times this may seem self-evident…we’re on the right track (23).

Kinesis plays are fundamental role in mind reading (two different aspects of the same process)

Mind reading is never unproblematic.

Other texts: “The Yellow Wallpaper”, “The Tell-Tale Heart”, “Bartleby the Scrinver” using unnatural narratives and movement.