A ‘half-remembered quality’: Experiencing narratorial disorientation in The Goldfinch.
WEDNESDAY 1ST MARCH 2017
CHLOE HARRISON (COVENTRY UNIVERSITY)
This paper applies cognitive linguistic approaches, and in particular Cognitive Grammar, for literary linguistic analysis. It analyses how The Goldfinch complicates the experience of ‘narrative urgency’ (Simpson 2013) in a pivotal scene in the novel, and accounts for how readers nevertheless become ‘gripped’ by this particular passage. The analysis observes that ‘spatial immersion’ (Ryan 2001) plays a key role in the sense of disorientation created by the scene, but that the text simultaneously, contradictorily, displays style features that heighten the pace of the narration. Finally, this study argues that the stylistic profile of this scene creates a cinematic experience for readers that renders this passage particularly memorable and immersive.