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Auyoung to Speak at UMD

Portrait of Professor Elaine Auyoung and the words Prof Professor Elaine Auyoung, Department of English, UM Twin Cities
October 4, 2019

Professor Elaine Auyoung speaks at UMD on Thurs., October 10, 2019.

On Thursday, October 10, English, Linguistics, and Writing Studies will host Professor Elaine Auyoung of the UM Twin Cities English Department for a presentation on her research. She is a specialist in 19th century literature, and her work is informed by thought from psychology and cognitive science. 

Please join us in the Rotunda of the Kathryn A. Martin Library from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. This event is free and open to all.

An abstract from Auyoung's research and presentation:

In an 1859 letter to George Eliot, Charles Dickens declared that Adam Bede had taken its place “among the actual experiences and endurances” of his life. A few years earlier, Eliot herself had written to a friend, “I am only just returned to a sense of the real world about me, for I have been reading Villette.” How do novels enable readers to feel as though they have come to know a “world” of unreal persons, places, and incidents in unexpectedly intimate and durable ways? This fundamental effect of reading fiction has remained remarkably resistant to critical examination. Using examples from Eliot's Middlemarch, however, I will show how psychological research on reading and cognition can help us understand how novels evoke a world in the reader’s mind. This cross-disciplinary approach offers new perspectives on realism, fictionality, mimesis, and how literary language works.

Learn more about UMD's Department of English, Linguistics, and Writing Studies