Teoría literaria general Archive

  • In light of numerous scientific studies, and also as a result of the challenges faced in the area of artificial intelligence, today it is possible to understand and describe in great detail how our brains work. 

According to some current ideological trends, we create our image of reality. However, it is not an unreal, intentionally skewed vision imposed from without, but rather one that has been validated and consolidated by our experiences, created by combining an infinite number of schemas, facts and perceptions that together constitute our mental “puzzle” of the world we live in  –an image filled with distortions, gaps and flaws, true; but even more so with accurate assessments, since otherwise it would be impossible for us to survive–. 

Our brains, furthermore, work in modules, using specific mechanisms,  transforming our perceptions into symbols, and in turn into behaviours. 
This explains why human languages are the way the are, and why literature builds stories the way it does;  as well as why both language and literature really influence us, and we them, with all the advantages and dangers this entails. 

The inevitability of both good and bad uses of human expression and their impact on us, explains why we have a specific mental module, innate, having the mission of detecting lies, traps and falsehoods, since they  threaten making efficient decisions regarding survival.  
Since we have this module, people who lie end up having no credibility, as tends to happen in the media, institutions, civil and cultural authorities, and individuals in a cyclical manner throughout history. 

Later in this article we will discuss in greater detail the fascinating characteristics of brain function which are relevant to linguistic and literary studies; and the clear advantages studying Humanities and Neuroscience (non-ideologically speaking)  provide for our survival.

    THE WAY OUR BRAIN WORKS, AND HUMAN EXPRESSION. Implications for Literature, Media and research

    In light of numerous scientific studies, and also as a result of the challenges faced in the area of artificial intelligence, today it is possible to understand and describe in great detail how our brains work. According to some current ideological trends, we create our image of reality. However, it is not an unreal, intentionally skewed vision imposed from without, but rather one that has been validated and consolidated by our experiences, created by combining an infinite number of schemas, facts and perceptions that together constitute our mental “puzzle” of the world we live in –an image filled with distortions, gaps and flaws, true; but even more so with accurate assessments, since otherwise it would be impossible for us to survive–. Our brains, furthermore, work in modules, using specific mechanisms, transforming our perceptions into symbols, and in turn into behaviours. This explains why human languages are the way the are, and why literature builds stories the way it does; as well as why both language and literature really influence us, and we them, with all the advantages and dangers this entails. The inevitability of both good and bad uses of human expression and their impact on us, explains why we have a specific mental module, innate, having the mission of detecting lies, traps and falsehoods, since they threaten making efficient decisions regarding survival. Since we have this module, people who lie end up having no credibility, as tends to happen in the media, institutions, civil and cultural authorities, and individuals in a cyclical manner throughout history. Later in this article we will discuss in greater detail the fascinating characteristics of brain function which are relevant to linguistic and literary studies; and the clear advantages studying Humanities and Neuroscience (non-ideologically speaking) provide for our survival.

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  • During the last decades, literary and media studies have merged, and enriched themselves with tools originally belonging to other disciplines: Anthropology, Sociology, Psychology, Political Sciences, Musicology, and many others...  
Out of their colaboration, in fact, a new discipline was born ─that of Cultural Studies, which builds upon the seminal idea, * that every cultural product and element, responds to a certain social need, and reflects ─in a certain way, too, our social reality.*

Under this multidisciplinarian umbrella, the careful and experienced analysis of popular fiction ─like that of Pedro Infante's movies in Mexico,  offers us a privileged channel to unveiling and understanding our deeper reality ─our "true reality", as Carlos Bousoño would say.
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       The present paper illustrates the point, better than a thick volume of theoretical frameworks.

    WHEN EVEN THE MOST COURAGEOUS CRY…

    During the last decades, literary and media studies have merged, and enriched themselves with tools originally belonging to other disciplines: Anthropology, Sociology, Psychology, Political Sciences, Musicology, and many others... Out of their colaboration, in fact, a new discipline was born ─that of Cultural Studies, which builds upon the seminal idea, * that every cultural product and element, responds to a certain social need, and reflects ─in a certain way, too, our social reality.* Under this multidisciplinarian umbrella, the careful and experienced analysis of popular fiction ─like that of Pedro Infante's movies in Mexico, offers us a privileged channel to unveiling and understanding our deeper reality ─our "true reality", as Carlos Bousoño would say. . The present paper illustrates the point, better than a thick volume of theoretical frameworks.

    Continue Reading...

  • In the same way that “no action is without an equal and opposite reaction”, there are no sounds that produce no effects.  
And precisely because they generate things inside of us  –they change us–, sounds are powerful: Just as they make us happy or well, they make us uncomfortable or ill.
That said, what do we know about them?; what are their effects? 
Do we know how to use them, both in our professional lives (for example: as a brand for our product), as well as in our private lives?
Julian Treasure is a professional who creates sounds for marketing and for communications media. And today's talk (the video) –the first of three–, simply and brilliantly introduces us to the world of sounds. Because “hearing better”, is living better...

    THE POWER OF SOUND –…by its effects you shall know it; talk by Julian Treasure

    In the same way that “no action is without an equal and opposite reaction”, there are no sounds that produce no effects. And precisely because they generate things inside of us –they change us–, sounds are powerful: Just as they make us happy or well, they make us uncomfortable or ill. That said, what do we know about them?; what are their effects? Do we know how to use them, both in our professional lives (for example: as a brand for our product), as well as in our private lives? Julian Treasure is a professional who creates sounds for marketing and for communications media. And today's talk (the video) –the first of three–, simply and brilliantly introduces us to the world of sounds. Because “hearing better”, is living better...

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  • An analysis of morbid content as a narrative device with a boomerang effect, since even when it generates an audience, it tends to kill the media source that resorted to using it (updated version).

    Have you ever wondered WHAT “MORBID” CONTENTS ARE?

    An analysis of morbid content as a narrative device with a boomerang effect, since even when it generates an audience, it tends to kill the media source that resorted to using it (updated version).

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  • A story where "nothing happens", may hardly prove interesting.  Another one that produces in us a brutal level of anxiety, by accumulating destructive events, cannot sustain itself as the most enjoyable one --as a "long runner" product, either.  In mass media, like everywhere else, the "right" seasoning is difficult to obtain, as different types of contents must be balanced and integrated to produce an enjoyable and memorable "dish", so that it will be able to fulfill its social function without harming society.  This is what this article talks about.

    Little by little, you can grow ACCUSTOMED TO (ALMOST) EVERYTHING!

    A story where "nothing happens", may hardly prove interesting. Another one that produces in us a brutal level of anxiety, by accumulating destructive events, cannot sustain itself as the most enjoyable one --as a "long runner" product, either. In mass media, like everywhere else, the "right" seasoning is difficult to obtain, as different types of contents must be balanced and integrated to produce an enjoyable and memorable "dish", so that it will be able to fulfill its social function without harming society. This is what this article talks about.

    Continue Reading...

  • This article was our first project on literary theory (or “poetics”), regarding works produced for popular, mass consumption. It explains how they are characterized by the repetitive and codified use of certain narrative schemas with which the audience is already familiar, and provides examples taken primarily from the telenovela industry. 

It was published long before Hawkin's "memes" (contagious, imitated ideas) became habitual amongst Communications people, and it does not only refer to them, but to the many various elements Literary scholars have analyzed as narrative building blocks in cultures all around the world, for centuries without end.

    MARGINALIZED LITERATURE, a new vision of an everlasting cultural issue

    This article was our first project on literary theory (or “poetics”), regarding works produced for popular, mass consumption. It explains how they are characterized by the repetitive and codified use of certain narrative schemas with which the audience is already familiar, and provides examples taken primarily from the telenovela industry. It was published long before Hawkin's "memes" (contagious, imitated ideas) became habitual amongst Communications people, and it does not only refer to them, but to the many various elements Literary scholars have analyzed as narrative building blocks in cultures all around the world, for centuries without end.

    Continue Reading...

  • Once in a while we run across the words "colective aesthetics", but few can explain to us what they mean in terms anyone can understand.  This brief article achieves this seemingly unsurmountable task, through exposing us to a fun and short test no-one "flunks", no-one fails to answer.  Not only does it make us laugh, it also makes us think why in the world we all know these things.  If our brains strive innately to learn and retain them, then --somehow, they are necessary for our survival both as individuals and as societies. It naturally follows that those literatures that feed on these elements and keep them alive, constitute a premier social institution, even if our society frequently fails to appreciate it.

    A test about media, YOU JUST WILL LOVE TO ANSWER!

    Once in a while we run across the words "colective aesthetics", but few can explain to us what they mean in terms anyone can understand. This brief article achieves this seemingly unsurmountable task, through exposing us to a fun and short test no-one "flunks", no-one fails to answer. Not only does it make us laugh, it also makes us think why in the world we all know these things. If our brains strive innately to learn and retain them, then --somehow, they are necessary for our survival both as individuals and as societies. It naturally follows that those literatures that feed on these elements and keep them alive, constitute a premier social institution, even if our society frequently fails to appreciate it.

    Continue Reading...

  • Steven Pinker, in his book "The blank slate; the modern denial of human nature", gathers scientific evidence in regards to the fact that all humans are born equal in terms of those traits which are innate to our species. 
This renown neurolinguist talks here about what has been discovered to be essentially human, and why this knowledge has irated so many people, despite the fact that it can save arts, media, and the humanities in general.

    Steven Pinker: THE PRESENT FAILURE OF ELITE ART TO ATTRACT US is linked to the blank slate theory.

    Steven Pinker, in his book "The blank slate; the modern denial of human nature", gathers scientific evidence in regards to the fact that all humans are born equal in terms of those traits which are innate to our species. This renown neurolinguist talks here about what has been discovered to be essentially human, and why this knowledge has irated so many people, despite the fact that it can save arts, media, and the humanities in general.

    Continue Reading...

  • Few times do we talk about what the "message" of a literary work is, even amongst those of us who study literature.  Finding out what the message is behind any human expression, however, is fundamental for surviving, as it allows us to filter what we are being told –to separate and retain what serves us, and to prevent us from falling prey to cheaters and liars.
Learning to see through information, allows us to make better use of media, too, without resorting to censorship or limiting our freedom of expression.

Evelyn, the movie (with Pierce Brosnan in the leading role), is a popular work, which was produced to help advance an unpopular political agenda amongst the general audience. The slant, the bias, the way reality was altered in it, in order to promote such agenda, is so great and evident, that it easily serves us to exemplify what a "message" is  –what we are talking about; and to show how even a reality-based narration can be manipulated in order to fulfil a given goal.

    How to make a movie say WHAT YOU WANT TO

    Few times do we talk about what the "message" of a literary work is, even amongst those of us who study literature. Finding out what the message is behind any human expression, however, is fundamental for surviving, as it allows us to filter what we are being told –to separate and retain what serves us, and to prevent us from falling prey to cheaters and liars. Learning to see through information, allows us to make better use of media, too, without resorting to censorship or limiting our freedom of expression. Evelyn, the movie (with Pierce Brosnan in the leading role), is a popular work, which was produced to help advance an unpopular political agenda amongst the general audience. The slant, the bias, the way reality was altered in it, in order to promote such agenda, is so great and evident, that it easily serves us to exemplify what a "message" is –what we are talking about; and to show how even a reality-based narration can be manipulated in order to fulfil a given goal.

    Continue Reading...

  • When we study colective aesthetics –like those modelling most popular and folk literatures, there is no way we can divorce the creator from his/her audience. Mass media, just like folk tales, feed precisely […]

    ARTICLES THAT INTEREST EVERYBODY (both creators and consumers)

    When we study colective aesthetics –like those modelling most popular and folk literatures, there is no way we can divorce the creator from his/her audience. Mass media, just like folk tales, feed precisely […]

    Continue Reading...

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