CJBC829 Role of Fantastic Literature in Today's World

Faculty of Arts
Spring 2020
Extent and Intensity
0/2/0. 4 credit(s). Type of Completion: z (credit).
Mgr. Tereza Dědinová, Ph.D. (lecturer)
Mgr. et Mgr. Zuzana Zoubková (lecturer)
Guaranteed by
doc. PhDr. Zbyněk Fišer, Ph.D.
Department of Czech Literature - Faculty of Arts
Contact Person: Mgr. Eva Zachová
Supplier department: Department of Czech Literature - Faculty of Arts
Thu 14:00–15:40 B2.41
Course Enrolment Limitations
The course is offered to students of any study field.
The capacity limit for the course is 25 student(s).
Current registration and enrolment status: enrolled: 16/25, only registered: 0/25, only registered with preference (fields directly associated with the programme): 0/25
Course objectives
The seminar extends the lecture CJBC822 The phenomenon of fantastic and develops theoretical knowledge through the method of active work with primary and secondary texts of fantastic literature with the support of cognitive science.
We will focus on the basic aspects of fantastic literature, especially in relation to reality and the reader, introducing students to the key findings of cognitive science, taking fantastic as a means of the development of cognitive, emotional and wills processes.
We will work mainly with contributions from foreign experts, whose theoretical basis will be applied to representative texts of both genre and non-genre fantastic literature, which we will simultaneously set into the historical and social context. Attention will be paid to extra-literary overlaps of fantastic literature from the point of view of psychology, neurology, sociology, environmental studies, etc.
Learning outcomes
After completing the course the student will be able to:
orientate herself in the category of fantastic literature;
will be familiar with the selected texts of contemporary great authors of fantastic literature;
illustrate and to analyze the differences between genre and non-fantastic literature;
formulate the fundamental questions of cognitive science (not only) in relation to the fantastic literature;
understand the basic concepts of cognitive science (theory of mind, mentality, empathy, imagination, fantasy and others);
understand different approaches to the fantastic and to problematise them with the contribution of knowledge of cognitive science;
apply theoretical knowledge to specific texts;interpret fantastic motifs in a literary work.
  • Cognitive science - basic concepts, methods and approaches; new perspectives for literary science.
  • Fiction and Reality - a natural and fantastic fictional world, objective, subjective and intersubjective reality.
  • Fantastic estrangement - claims placed on the imagination of the reader.
  • Genre and non -genre reading of fantastic literature - categorization as innate tendency.
  • Escape from reality in fantastic literature and its function from the point of view of literary and cognitive science.
  • (Non) deliberate identification of the reader with the character and the situation - the development of empathy through reading, the trap of identification, the difference between identification and compassion.
  • Fantastic literature as a return to the roots - a myth in fantastic literature, a relationship with the past.
  • Literature focused on the future - extrapolation, perception of time.
  • The Role of Dystopic Literature - What the reader can learn when he or she is confronted with problems via reading.
  • Planetarianism - fantastic stories as a search for options for environmental remedies.
  • Ethics in Fantastic Literature - Searching for Good and Evil.
  • From fantasy to reality - analysis of religious and civic groups inspired by fantastic literature.
  • HOGAN, Patrick Colm: 2003 Cognitive Science, Literature, and the Arts: A Guide for Humanists (London and New York: Routledge)
  • HOGAN, Patrick Colm: 2014 What Literature Teaches Us about Emotion (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press)
  • ARMSTRONG, Paul B.: 2014 How Literature Plays with the Brain: The Neuroscience of Reading (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press)
  • DĚDINOVÁ, Tereza, Zbyněk FIŠER, Jakub JARINA, Luisa NOVÁKOVÁ, Matěj ANTOŠ, Jana CINDLEROVÁ, Joanna CZAPLIŃSKA, Antonín DOLÁK, Michal FRÁNEK, Anna GNOT, Daniel JAKUBÍČEK, Jiří JELÍNEK, Zdeněk JEŽEK, Hana MÁLKOVÁ, Lenka NALDONIOVÁ, Ester NOVÁKOVÁ, Michaela PAUČO, Ondřej POMAHAČ, Martina SALHIOVÁ, Jakub SOUČEK and Helena ULBRECHTOVÁ. Na rozhraní světů. Fantastická literatura v mezioborovém zkoumání (At the Edge of the Worlds. Fantastic Literature in Interdisciplinary Exploration). 1. vyd. Brno: Masarykova univerzita, 2016. 376 pp. Spisy Filozofické fakulty Masarykovy univerzity, sv. 454. ISBN 978-80-210-8441-4. doi:10.5817/CZ.MUNI.M210-8441-2016. Digitální knihovna FF MU Munishop info
  • CAVE, Terence. Thinking with literature : towards a cognitive criticism. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016. xvi, 199. ISBN 9780198749417. info
  • DĚDINOVÁ, Tereza. Po divné krajině : charakteristika a vnitřní členění fantastické literatury (Through a Strange Landscape : Characteristics and Inner Structuring of Fantastic Literature). 1., elektronické vyd. Brno: Masarykova univerzita, 2015. 228 pp. Spisy Filozofické fakulty Masarykovy univerzity, sv. 433. ISBN 978-80-210-7872-7. doi:10.5817/CZ.MUNI.M210-7872-2015. Munishop Digitální knihovna FF MU info
  • NIKOLAJEVA, Maria. Reading for learning : cognitive approaches to children's literature. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 2014. viii, 247. ISBN 9789027201577. info
  • ATTEBERY, Brian. Stories about stories : fantasy and the remaking of myth. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014. 240 s. ISBN 9780199316069. info
  • CARACCIOLO, Marco. The experientiality of narrative : an enactivist approach. Berlin: De Gruyter, 2014. xiii, 231. ISBN 9783110552997. info
  • OZIEWICZ, Marek. One earth, one people : the mythopoeic fantasy series of Ursula K. Le Guin, Lloyd Alexander, Madeleine L'Engle and Orson Scott Card. Edited by Brian Attebery. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Company, 2008. vii, 263. ISBN 9780786431359. info
  • MENDLESOHN, Farah. Rhetorics of fantasy. Middletown, Conn.: Wesleyan University Press, 2008. xxv, 306. ISBN 9780819568670. info
  • The encyclopedia of fantasy. Edited by John Clute - John Grant - Michael Ashley - David G. Hartwell - Gary We. 1st pub. London: Orbit, 1997. xvi, 1049. ISBN 1857233689. info
  • The encyclopedia of science fiction. Edited by John Clute - Peter Nicholls - Brian M. Stableford - John Grant. 1st pub. London: Orbit, 1993. xxxvi, 137. ISBN 1857231244. info
  • ATTEBERY, Brian. Strategies of fantasy. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1992. xiv, 152. ISBN 0253310709. info
Teaching methods
Reading of short texts (compulsory literature), presentation of student projects, discussion on the topic. The student should be able to read secondary texts in English.
Assessment methods
Preparation of the student project and its oral presentation, active participation in the seminar, attendance (maximum two absences).
Language of instruction
Further Comments
Study Materials
The course is taught only once.
The course is also listed under the following terms Spring 2019.
  • Enrolment Statistics (recent)
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