ERIC Number: ED236677
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Hot Cognition: Emotion and Writing Behavior.
Brand, Alice G.
Although contemporary psychologists generally acknowledge the significance of affect in human experience, few have attempted to understand its role in cognitive processes. The same can be said of writing specialists. In fact, New Criticism, so long dominant in American literary thinking, still continues to influence the emotions writers disclose publicly and perhaps even those they experience during composing. Nevertheless, a perusal of writers' diaries, interview transcripts, memoirs, and autobiographies amply documents the presence of emotions during the process. Negative emotions move writers to composing as easily if not more easily than positive emotions. Expression frequently results, however, not from one emotion's dominance over the other, but from the juxtaposition of positive and negative feelings. Not typically found in their pure states, emotions mix, blend, become subtler and richer in meaning, appear to be experienced simultaneously, and seem sometimes paradoxical but under voluntary control. An emotions model is needed to describe the relationship of emotion to the lexical and syntactic choices made in writing. A failure to examine emotion with the same critical attention that cognition inspires is a glaring oversight. Evidence and thought point at least to the reciprocal role of cognitive and affective processes in our mental life, which makes the role of emotion in writing too apposite to ignore. (HOD)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (34th, Detroit, MI, March 17-19, 1983).