Housman, Richards, and Leavis: Between Physiology and Phenomenology

TitleHousman, Richards, and Leavis: Between Physiology and Phenomenology
Publication TypeThesis
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsTownsend, JAlbert
Academic DepartmentFaculty of Arts and Social Sciences
DegreeDoctor of Philosophy Ph.D.
Date Published01/2017
UniversityUniversity of Sydney
KeywordsA.E. Housman, F.R. Leavis, I.A. Richards, neurohumanities, phenomenology, physiology

Neuroliterary studies are becoming increasingly more common. However, a disparity remains between neurophysiological description and phenomenological description. This dissertation argues that neither phenomenology nor neurophysiology alone offer a complete picture of the reading and writing process, but rather must be understood as providing a complementary picture of our interactions with literature. To this end, I attempt to find a physiological pre-history for recent critical shifts (specifically the neurocritic and his neuroliterary field) in the critical works of A.E. Housman (The Name and Nature of Poetry), I.A. Richards (Practical Criticism), and F.R. Leavis (The Great Tradition).