Mental Imagery and Poetry

Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism (forthcoming)
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Poetry evokes mental imagery in its readers. But how is mental imagery precisely related to poetry? This paper provides a systematic treatment. It clarifies two roles of mental imagery in relation to poetry – as an effect generated by poetry and as an efficient means for understanding and appreciating poetry. The paper also relates mental imagery to the discussion on the ‘heresy of paraphrase’. It argues against the orthodox view that the imagistic effects of poetry cannot be captured by prosaic paraphrase, but points to features of poetry that can shape aspects of mental imagery which are liable to be lost in paraphrase.

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Michelle Liu
University of Hertfordshire

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References found in this work

The transparency of experience.Michael G. F. Martin - 2002 - Mind and Language 17 (4):376-425.
What metaphors mean.Donald Davidson - 2010 - In Darragh Byrne & Max Kölbel (eds.), Critical Inquiry. Routledge. pp. 31.
What Metaphors Mean.Donald Davidson - 1978 - Critical Inquiry 5 (1):31-47.
Perceptual content and the content of mental imagery.Bence Nanay - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (7):1723-1736.
Implicit Bias as Mental Imagery.Bence Nanay - 2021 - Journal of the American Philosophical Association 7 (3):329-347.

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