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Empathy and the Psychology of Literary Modernism$
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Meghan Marie Hammond

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780748690985

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748690985.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 27 July 2021

Communities of Feeling in Katherine Mansfield’s Fiction

Communities of Feeling in Katherine Mansfield’s Fiction

(p.90) Chapter 3 Communities of Feeling in Katherine Mansfield’s Fiction
Empathy and the Psychology of Literary Modernism

Meghan Marie Hammond

Edinburgh University Press

Chapter Three, “Communities of Feeling in Katherine Mansfield’s Fiction,” finds a rich variety of fellow feeling in Mansfield’s short stories with the help of Max Scheler’s influential 1913 book The Nature of Sympathy. Mansfield’s short stories exhibit a resistance to sympathetic feeling that operates along both gender and class lines. In particular, objects in Mansfield’s fiction take on symbolic meanings that militate against empty forms of sympathy, or what Scheler describes as “emotional vampirism.” But like Scheler, Mansfield ultimately values fellow feeling. This chapter closes with a reading of Mansfield’s long story “Prelude” (1918), arguing that she weaves her characters together into an empathic collective that is only completed by a narrative agent.

Keywords:   Katherine Mansfield, Scheler, Titchener, empathy, sympathy, privacy, community, collective

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