We all know that the mind is a complex realm, but some scientists argue that it is actually a complex system. As a result, these scientists view consciousness and the self as emergent properties of the non-linear complex interaction of different signals and boundaries. How can we narrate this complexity then, given that narrative – in its standard definition – is a means of ordering events in linear and causal terms?
Marco Bernini (HtV researcher) addresses this tantalising question in his newest publication, titled ‘Narrative and Cognitive Modelling: Insights from Beckett Exploring Mind’s Complexity‘. In this chapter for Narrating Complexity, a new book which stages a dialogue between the fields of complexity science and narrative studies, Marco suggests that literary authors such as Samuel Beckett have been able to model the mind as a complex system (and consciousness and the self as its emergent outcomes) by manipulating the narrative toolbox in exploratory ways.
The full chapter can be read here.