Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …

Journal of Literary Semantics

An International Review

Founded by Eaton, Trevor

Ed. by Toolan, Michael

2 Issues per year

CiteScore 2016: 0.44

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2015: 0.182
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2015: 0.764

See all formats and pricing
More options …
Volume 42, Issue 2


Reading imaginatively: The imagination in cognitive science and cognitive literary studies

Emily T. Troscianko
Published Online: 2013-09-17 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jls-2013-0009


I argue that literary studies can contribute to the “imagery debate” (between pictorialist, propositionalist, and enactivist accounts of mental imagery). While imagery questionnaires are pictorially configured and conflate imagining and seeing with pictorial representation, literary texts can exploit language's capacity for indeterminacy and therefore elicit very different imaginative experiences, thus illuminating the non-pictorial qualities of mental imagery.

Keywords: Cognitive literary science; Enactivism; Imagery questionnaires; Kafka; Mental imagery; Pictorialism

About the article

Emily T. Troscianko

Emily T. Troscianko is Junior Research Fellow in Modern Languages (French and German) at St John's College, University of Oxford. She currently works on ‘cognitive realism’ in French and German ‘Realist’ and ‘Modernist’ prose fiction, aiming to illuminate from a cognitive perspective what it means for a literary text to be realistic. Recent articles include ‘The cognitive realism of memory in Flaubert's Madame Bovary’ (Modern Language Review, 2012) and ‘Cognitive realism and memory in Proust's madeleine episode’ (Memory Studies, 2013). The monograph Kafka's Cognitive Realism is forthcoming (2014) with Routledge.

Published Online: 2013-09-17

Published in Print: 2013-09-17

Citation Information: Journal of Literary Semantics, Volume 42, Issue 2, Pages 181–198, ISSN (Online) 1613-3838, ISSN (Print) 0341-7638, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jls-2013-0009.

Export Citation

©[2013] by Walter de Gruyter Berlin Boston. Copyright Clearance Center

Citing Articles

Here you can find all Crossref-listed publications in which this article is cited. If you would like to receive automatic email messages as soon as this article is cited in other publications, simply activate the “Citation Alert” on the top of this page.

Renate Brosch
Poetics Today, 2018, Volume 39, Number 2, Page 225
Dan McIntyre
Language and Literature, 2014, Volume 23, Number 4, Page 389
Emily T. Troscianko
Paragraph, 2014, Volume 37, Number 1, Page 15

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in