The “dissolving margins” of Elena Ferrante and the Neapolitan Novels: A cognitive approach to fictionality, authorial intentionality, and autofictional reading strategies

GIBBONS, Alison (2019). The “dissolving margins” of Elena Ferrante and the Neapolitan Novels: A cognitive approach to fictionality, authorial intentionality, and autofictional reading strategies. Narrative Inquiry, 29 (2), 391-417.

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Link to published version:: https://doi.org/10.1075/ni.19017.gib
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    Abstract

    Using Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels as case study, this article presents a cognitive approach to fictionality and authorial intention using Text World Theory and Mind-Modelling. It investigates two forms of ontological distortion: readers’ (mis)classification of the novels’ genre (as autofiction or autobiography) and the problem posed by the author’s pseudonymic identity. The analysis has three parts: first, I conduct a Text World analysis of the novels’ syntactic/stylistic similarities to autobiography and, in doing so, reveal its ontological structure; second, I consider the ontological liminality of narration and the ways in which readers build an authorial mind-model of Ferrante; thirdly, I explore the assessment of critics and/as readers of the text’s fictionality and the impact of Ferrante’s pseudonym on perceptions of authorial intentionality and the authorial mind-model. Ultimately, I argue that a cognitive approach offers greatest insight into readers’ interpretations of authors and of fictionality.

    Item Type: Article
    Uncontrolled Keywords: 20 Language, Communication and Culture; 16 Studies in Human Society; Languages & Linguistics
    Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1075/ni.19017.gib
    Page Range: 391-417
    SWORD Depositor: Symplectic Elements
    Depositing User: Symplectic Elements
    Date Deposited: 17 Jul 2019 11:34
    Last Modified: 22 Oct 2019 10:16
    URI: http://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/24876

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