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Memory and Understanding

Concept formation in Proust’s <i>A la recherche du temps perdu</i>

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Abstract

This book treats memory and understanding on two levels, on the phenomenological level of experience, on which a theory of dynamic conceptual semantics is built, and on the neuro-connectionist level, which supports the capacities of concept formation, remembering, and understanding. A neuro-connectionist circuit architecture of a constructive memory is developed in which understanding and remembering are modelled in accordance with the constituent structures of a dynamic conceptual semantics. Consciousness emerges by circuit activation between conceptual indicators and episodic indices with the sensory-motor, emotional, and proprioceptual areas. <br />This theory of concept formation, remembering, and understanding is applied to Proust’s <i>A la recherche du temps perdu</i> , with special attention to the author’s excursions into philosophical and aesthetic issues. Under this perspective, Proust’s work can be seen as an artistic exploration into our capacity of understanding, whereby the unconscious, the memory, is exteriorized in consciousness by presenting the experienced episodes in the conceptual order of similarity and contiguity through our capacity of concept formation. (Series A)

Subjects: Semantics; Consciousness research; Neuropsychology; Cognitive psychology; Theoretical literature & literary studies; Philosophy

  • Affiliations: 1: University of Amsterdam

References

http://jbenjamins.metastore.ingenta.com/content/books/9789027294548
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