Reading embodied consciousness in Emma

Antonina Harbus*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


The language of Emma (1815) reflects Jane Austen's developing view of embodied consciousness and her particular interest in this novel in the physical manifestations of emotions, such as blushes and nervous responses. The discursive exploration of the inner life in Emma is the product of a cultural context that features emerging brain science and Austen's own conceptualization of the psychophysical nature of emotions. This article analyzes the language of mind and emotion in Emma, to contend that Austen grapples with the implications of the idea of embodied consciousness in a narrative that contrasts mind reading with interpreting the body.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)765-782
Number of pages18
JournalSEL - Studies in English Literature
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2011


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