Phenomenological Reviews

Series | Book | Chapter


Temporal conflict in the reading experience

Cathrine Kietz

pp. 51-73


Analogous to our visual perspective, we also have a temporal perspective spanning beyond the present singular point in time. In literary narratives, the characters in the story have a visual perspective on the represented world whereas the reader has a temporal perspective on the narrative as such. The reader's temporal perspective is a bit eschewed to the represented visual perspective in that there is a temporal distance between the represented events and the reader's point of view. This temporal distance can be exploited aesthetically to create a conflict between the representation and the presentation of the literary work of art. In a vein similar to the "conflict' in Husserlian picture consciousness, there is a temporal conflict in reading consciousness that will be discussed here with reference to literary examples from Flaubert and Kafka.

Publication details

Published in:

Bundgaard Peer F., Stjernfelt Frederik (2015) Investigations into the phenomenology and the ontology of the work of art: what are artworks and how do we experience them?. Dordrecht, Springer.

Pages: 51-73

DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-14090-2_4

Full citation:

Kietz Cathrine (2015) „Temporal conflict in the reading experience“, In: P. F. Bundgaard & F. Stjernfelt (eds.), Investigations into the phenomenology and the ontology of the work of art, Dordrecht, Springer, 51–73.