Literature & Psychology

bookshelves: Literature and Psychology

“Breaking Bad” and the Willful Suspension of Disbelief

  We know that time travel is impossible. Yet when we pick up Octavia Butler’s Kindred or Audrey Niffenegger’s The Time Traveler’s Wife, we don’t stop reading when we see characters moving through time. No, we accept that the story the author wants to tell requires time travel, and we allow it to exist in …

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bookshelves: Literature and Psychology

A University Module on Victorian Literature and Psychology

  In today’s curation for Literature & Psychology I’ve come across this article: Escaping ‘Horrible Sanity’: Teaching Victorian Literature and Psychology Here Serena Trowbridge, Lecturer in English Literature at Birmingham City University in the U.K., introduces the module she teaches on Victorian literature and psychology. The rest of the article, written by one of Trowbridge’s students, describes …

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bookshelves: Literature and Psychology

Joseph Campbell and the Hero’s Journey

  Have you noticed how similar are the stories of Luke Skywalker, Frodo Baggins, and Harry Potter? All three of these ordinary fellows set out on a long journey, fraught with danger, to undertake a task with a little help from their friends. When Joseph Campbell examined the mythologies of the world’s major civilizations, he …

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bookshelves: Literature and Psychology

Introducing Literature & Psychology

  Literature & Psychology is a collection of interdisciplinary news items that I aggregate daily (well, almost daily) through ScoopIt. Literature & Psychology is also a new category of blog post here. Of course, there’s a story behind it. About 35 years ago I completed the coursework, though not the dissertation, for a doctorate in …

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“The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox” by Maggie O’Farrell

O’Farrell, Maggie. The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox    New York: Harcourt, 2006  ISBN 978-0-15-101411-8   Blackstone Audiobooks, narrated by Anne Flosnik Recommended This novel is about family stories–in this case, the truths that don’t get told and the lies that spring up to fill the void–and how those stories reverberate through generations. Iris Lockhart …

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“The Knitting Circle” by Ann Hood

Hood, Ann. The Knitting Circle New York: Norton, 2007 ISBN 0-393-05901-4 Blackstone Audiobooks, narrated by Hillary Huber Highly recommended This novel is all about perspective, and about the healing power of telling our stories. When Mary Baxter’s five-year-old daughter dies suddenly of meningitis, Mary finds herself unable to read, write, go to work, or do …

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“Writing a Woman’s Life” by Carolyn G. Heilbrun

Heilbrun, Carolyn G. Writing a Woman’s Life (1988)  W.W. Norton & Company, 144 pages, $14.95 hardcover  ISBN 0-393-02601-9 In the “Introduction,” feminist scholar Carolyn Heilbrun explains the topic of her book: There are four ways to write a woman’s life: the woman herself may tell it, in what she chooses to call an autobiography; she …

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