Aim and Scope of the Course
This is an interdisciplinary course on the human mind. The main aim is to encourage an understanding of the range and richness of the ways in which the human mind has been conceptualised across the boundaries of literature, cognitive neuroscience and literary theory/philosophy. It is designed to provide students with an opportunity to 1) learn some of the more significant developments that have emerged from cognitive neuroscience on emotion, mindreading, visual perception, attachment, memory and sex/gender; 2) relate the scientific findings to larger propositions about the nature and value of human experience found in European classics; 3) develop skills of ‘practical criticism’.
NB: For matter relating to registration, please contact Brian Ernst directly
The range of reading for the course is very wide. Students will expected to demonstrate detailed knowledge of a number of theoretical, scientific and philosophical texts as well as respond to the set literary works with historically, scientifically and aesthetically-informed relevance.
The core texts in Winter 2018 are: George Orwell’s 1984, Simone de Beauvoir’s The Woman Destroyed, Virginia Woolf’s To the Lighthouse, and Samuel Beckett’s Not I. Participants should read the assigned texts closely before the class in which they are discussed.
Evaluation and Examination
Class Participation: 10%
Mid-term Literature Review: 35%
Final paper: 50%