Maximum Occupancy: A creative and critical exploration of how Text World Theory can be used when writing literary texts to communicate emotional experience

Justice, Steve (2021) Maximum Occupancy: A creative and critical exploration of how Text World Theory can be used when writing literary texts to communicate emotional experience. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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Abstract

This thesis, consisting of a novel-length piece of creative writing, entitled Maximum Occupancy, and a critical research report, explores the extent to which an application of the cognitive poetics framework of Text World Theory during the creative writing process has an impact on the reader’s emotional experience of the creative text. It achieves this through an experimental research cycle of practice-led research and research-led practice. Firstly, a piece of creative writing is edited according to the ideas of Text World Theory, then qualitative data is collected through reader responses to two versions of the creative text before the responses are analysed to determine patterns in relation to emotional experience. Finally, the findings of the research are used to inform the rest of the creative writing process. Two data collection sessions were conducted on two separate pieces of writing through open ended questionnaires with the findings applied to the novel-length final outcome of the creative writing.

The aim of the thesis is to contribute primarily to the field of creative writing and secondarily to the field of cognitive poetics, as well as making suggestions for the practice of creative writing in the future. The results of the research demonstrate that Text World Theory can be a useful tool for creative writers, with the edits made resulting in more varied emotional reader responses, more explicit descriptions of feeling immersion, and less descriptions of feeling disconnected from the creative text. The thesis also argues that the results demonstrate that Text World Theory still has a role to play in the analysis of emotional experience in literature, and that it can be a tool for creativity as well as analysis.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (PhD)
Supervisors: Jordan, Spencer
Stockwell, Peter
Keywords: creative writing, cognitive poetics, Text World Theory, emotional experience
Subjects: P Language and literature > PR English literature
Faculties/Schools: UK Campuses > Faculty of Arts > School of English
Item ID: 65150
Depositing User: Justice, Steven
Date Deposited: 04 Aug 2021 12:50
Last Modified: 04 Aug 2021 13:01
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/65150

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