Feb 28, 2024  
2016-2017 Catalogue 
2016-2017 Catalogue [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

PSYC 29901 - Psychology and Literature

Course Credit: 1
In this course we will examine the relationship between psychology and literature. Students will study the different facets of that uniquely human behavior: reading. What is the psychological experience of reading a novel or short story? How does this ability develop? What role does language play in shaping consciousness and the mind, and how does fiction serve a related function? How does the unconscious (both personal and collective) shape our experience of reading fiction? A further course objective will be to analyze literary works in terms of psychological theories. In particular we will focus on the works of Freud and Jung, and how they have influenced both psychology and literatureover the last century. Through textual analysis we will explore the role of literature has in the socialization ofchildren and adults, and the ability of such works to transmit information about interpersonal relationships, morality, and social isolation. Students will gain an appreciation for and understanding of character development and motivation as symbol and archetype. In addition to focusing on the psychological approach to literature, students will develop the necessary skills to write an effective analytical essay with a clear focus, logical organization, and meaningful detail. [HSS]