Call for Chapters: Cognitive Approaches to Slavic Cultures

Call for Chapters: Cognitive Approaches to Slavic Cultures

Over the course of this century, the cognitive sciences have had an influence on more and more fields of intellectual inquiry. The prefix “neuro-” has been applied to an increasingly large number of fields such as neuroeconomics, neurolaw, neurophilosophy, neuroethics, and so forth. The arts have been no exception with neuroaesthetics, neurocritique, neurocinematics, and cognitive poetics becoming substantive interdisciplinary fields. These fields are established enough to have developed multiple productive methodologies, yet new enough that there are many potential avenues of research that have only begun to be explored.

The application of cognitive psychology to the study of Slavic culture is at just such a juncture where productive work is being done, but the field has plenty of room to explore and adapt. This makes it an opportune time to bring together these different approaches in an attempt to define the outlines of the field. To this purpose, Lexington Books will be publishing the first collection devoted to cognitive approaches to Slavic culture. The purposes of this volume is first of all to show the breadth of work being done from a cognitive perspective in Slavic Studies; second to demonstrate the utility of cognitive approaches to culture for those new to such approaches; and lastly to push the field forward in terms of what it can do practically.

“Cognitive” here should be viewed broadly and may include any aspect of cognitive, developmental, evolutionary, behavioral, or cultural psychology; as well as any subset of the social sciences or humanities that are informed by them. That is, submissions may take one of multiple approaches. Some of many possible examples include:

  • Submissions may draw directly from the work of cognitive scientists such as Antonio Damasio and his work on consciousness and world-modeling; Michael Gazzaniga’s research with split-brain patients and confabulation; V. S. Ramachandran’s theories of synesthesia; Jaak Panksepp’s affective neuroscience; Dean Simonton on creativity; or Alison Gopnik’s studies on child development.
  • They can use work from the social sciences and humanities that uses the cognitive sciences or evolutionary models. Examples could include the cognitive study of religion (Harvey Whitehouse, Scott Atran, Pascal Boyer, Ara Norenzayan), Cognitive Anthropology (Roy D’Andrade), or Patricia Churchland’s neurophilosophy.
  • There has recently been a wealth of literary approaches founded in the cognitive sciences. Among these are cognitive poetics (Reuven Tsur, Mark Turner, Peter Stockwell), cognitive narratology (David Herman), literature and affect (Patrick Hogan), literature and Theory of Mind (Lisa Zunshine), literature and the senses (Elaine Scarry), and literature and subjectivity (Alan Richardson).
  • Cognitive historicism, which examines how theories of the brain influence literary works, has been a particularly fruitful line of inquiry. Mary Crane’s work on Shakespeare and Isabel Jaén and Julien Jacques Simon’s on Cervantes are good examples.

Please email Tom Dolack ( with a title and abstract, or with any questions, by March 31. Abstracts should state clearly how cognitive psychology is being used in the chapter. A decision on acceptance will be made by April 15. Accepted papers will be due September of this year followed by a round of peer review.