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Criss-crossing James Joyce's Ulysses: Chiasmus and Cognition


Ljungberg, Christina (2020). Criss-crossing James Joyce's Ulysses: Chiasmus and Cognition. In: Fischer, Olga; Perniss, Pamela; Ljungberg, Christina. Operationalizing Iconicity. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 200-210.

Abstract

Chiasmus fundamentally involves iconicity. As a bi-lateral symmetrical figure that can have both an ornamental and a rhetorical function, it occurs on all levels of texts - sounds and graphemes, words, sentences, lines, chapters and entire books as well as on the narrative and on the conceptual level. The chiastic mirror-image design in which the second part is balanced against the first is however not limited to language but also appears in art and architecture. As recent cognitive research has shown, chiasmus forms an important strategy through its simple but unique design. This has to do with its spatial shape and how the crisscrossing of lines and paths that takes place in the X-figure is cognized, perceptually and experientially – suggesting itself as the origin of human abilities such as forming analogies and using conceptual integration. This is what my contribution explores, with example from James Joyce’s Ulysses.

Abstract

Chiasmus fundamentally involves iconicity. As a bi-lateral symmetrical figure that can have both an ornamental and a rhetorical function, it occurs on all levels of texts - sounds and graphemes, words, sentences, lines, chapters and entire books as well as on the narrative and on the conceptual level. The chiastic mirror-image design in which the second part is balanced against the first is however not limited to language but also appears in art and architecture. As recent cognitive research has shown, chiasmus forms an important strategy through its simple but unique design. This has to do with its spatial shape and how the crisscrossing of lines and paths that takes place in the X-figure is cognized, perceptually and experientially – suggesting itself as the origin of human abilities such as forming analogies and using conceptual integration. This is what my contribution explores, with example from James Joyce’s Ulysses.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Book Section, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > English Department
Dewey Decimal Classification:820 English & Old English literatures
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Language and Linguistics
Social Sciences & Humanities > Communication
Uncontrolled Keywords:chiasmus, cognition, iconicity, multidirectionality, mulitdimensionality, polytemporality, multisensoriality, Joyce
Language:English
Date:13 May 2020
Deposited On:27 Jan 2021 15:44
Last Modified:29 Jan 2021 07:05
Publisher:John Benjamins Publishing Company
Series Name:Iconicity in Language and Literature
Number:17
ISSN:1873-5037
ISBN:9789027205100
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1075/ill.17.12lju
Related URLs:https://benjamins.com/catalog/ill.17 (Publisher)

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