Refiguring Minds in Narrative Media


Refiguring Minds in Narrative Media

David Ciccoricco

Frontiers of Narrative Series

332 pages
11 photographs, 1 appendix


December 2015


$55.00 Add to Cart
eBook (EPUB)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

December 2015


$55.00 Add to Cart
eBook (PDF)
Ebook purchases delivered via Leaf e-Reader

December 2015


$55.00 Add to Cart

About the Book

How do writers represent cognition, and what can these representations tell us about how our own minds work? Refiguring Minds in Narrative Media is the first single-author book to explore these questions across media, moving from analyses of literary narratives in print to those found where so much cultural and artistic production occurs today: computer screens.

Expanding the domain of literary studies from a focus on representations to the kind of simulations that characterize narratives in digital media, such as those found in interactive, web-based digital fictions and story-driven video games, David Ciccoricco draws on new research in the cognitive sciences to illustrate how the cybernetic and ludic qualities characterizing narratives in new literary media have significant implications for how we understand the workings of actual minds in an increasingly media-saturated culture. Amid continued concern about the impact of digital media on the minds of readers and players today, and the alarming philosophical questions generated by the communion of minds and machines, Ciccoricco provides detailed examples illustrating how stories in virtually any medium can still nourish creative imagination and cultivate critical—and ethical—reflection. Contributing new insights on attention, perception, memory, and emotion, Refiguring Minds in Narrative Media is a book at the forefront of a new wave of media-conscious cognitive literary studies.

Author Bio

David Ciccoricco is a senior lecturer in the department of English and linguistics at the University of Otago, New Zealand. He is the author of Reading Network Fiction.


"A strong entry in the growing area of cognitive literary studies."—Tony E. Jackson, Poetics Today

Refiguring Minds in Narrative Media reconfigures the old primal scene, turning the allegorical figure from foe to familiar, subject no more to repression but to remediation, a process that articulates the old and new. Ciccoricco reads fearlessly across platforms and genres, weaving into his network of resonance a new identity for mindful stories. This will be a crucial book for anyone who cares about the present and future of fiction.”—Stuart Moulthrop, author of Victory Garden and Hegirascope

“It’s exciting to see cognitive narrative theory being productively applied to all sorts of new media, and especially so when it’s done as well as this. David Ciccoricco takes a rigorous and learned look at examples of digital fiction, video games, and even print novels, and the results are invariably impressive and highly stimulating. His perceptive insights into his examples reveal important new ways to think about narrative from a cognitive perspective.”—Alan Palmer, author of Fictional Minds

“In this beautifully written book, David Ciccoricco uses print and digital narrative as springboards for the discussion of major cognitive issues such as memory, perception, attention, and emotion. . . .  His close readings of digital texts, especially games, lift any doubt about the ability of their medium to provide a novel and aesthetically stimulating narrative experience.”—Marie-Laure Ryan, editor of Narrative across Media and coeditor of Storyworlds across Media

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations



Part 1. Attention and Perception

1. Tragic Misperceptions in a Novel of Twin Consciousness

2. Digital Fiction and Your Divided Attention

3. Gameworlds and Sharing Attention in Mythic Proportions

Part 2. Memory and Emotion

4. Great Escalations in a Novel of the Everyday

5. Digital Fiction and Memory’s Playground

6. Playing with Memory and a Graphophiliac God of War

Coda: Pattern and Coherence





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