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Title: Explicit readings : an inquiry into young adults' embodied experience of fictional texts
Author: Sammut, Carmel
Awarding Body: University of Kent
Current Institution: University of Kent
Date of Award: 2020
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This qualitative research explores the reading experience of two groups of young adults, aged between 16-18 years, as they interact with a short story, Graham Greene's "The End of the Party". A cognitive poetics (Tsur 1987, 1992; Stockwell 2002) approach is deployed to understand "what these readers do" and "how they do it" (Canning 2017) as they interact with this text. Text World Theory (Werth 1999; Gavins 2007), a sub theory of cognitive poetics, is applied to explore the conceptual boundary crossings that occurred as the participants projected their real-world beliefs and experiences onto the text, and in turn to examine the stylistic features that enhanced or inhibited these readerly-text dynamics. The study takes a multimodal approach to investigate the real-time personal and textual exchanges that occurred as readers interacted with an entire short story rather than a text adapted to suit a laboratory experiment. This research focusses on that liminal space that is created as readers enter the world of the text and, in return, allow the text to exert its influence on them through its stylistic devices. Ultimately, the study emphasises how a cognitive poetics approach with its focus on both literary stylistics and how the personal and social backgrounds of the readers impact the reading experience, will prove beneficial for the teaching of literature in an educational setting.
Supervisor: Scott, Jeremy ; Shaughnessy, Nicola Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available