Marco Caracciolo - NARMESH

Onderstaande beschrijving is in het Engels:

Marco Caracciolo


Marco Caracciolo is an Associate Professor of English and Literary Theory at UGent, where he coordinates the ERC Starting Grant project “Narrating the Mesh” (NARMESH). He received a PhD in Comparative Literature from the University of Bologna in 2012. Before coming to Ghent, Marco has held fellowships in Hamburg, Groningen, and Freiburg, and he has been a “Project Narrative” visiting scholar at Ohio State University.

Marco’s work focuses on the phenomenology of narrative, or the structure of the experiences afforded by literary fiction and other narrative media. He is also interested in readers’ engagement with characters whom they perceive as mentally deviant (narrating animals, serial killers, cyborgs). He has recently begun to investigate the relationship between narrative and scientific models, particularly models that challenge the human-scale world of bodily experience.

Marco has published in journals such as Narrative, Poetics Today, Modern Fiction Studies, and New Literary History. He is the author of three books: The Experientiality of Narrative: An Enactivist Approach (De Gruyter, 2014; honorable mention for the Perkins Prize of the International Society for the Study of Narrative); Strange Narrators in Contemporary Fiction: Explorations in Readers’ Engagement with Characters (University of Nebraska Press, 2016); and A Passion for Specificity: Confronting Inner Experience in Literature and Science (co-authored with psychologist Russell Hurlburt; Ohio State University Press, 2016).




Narrating the Mesh: Ecology and the Non-Human in contemporary fiction and Oral Storytelling (NARMESH)

Marco Caracciolo - NARMESHToday’s ecological crisis prompts us to rethink our attitude towards physical and natural realities that have traditionally been seen as opposed to human subjectivity and agency. What emerges from this “non-human turn” is a sense of our interdependence with things like the bacteria in our intestines or the carbon atoms supporting life on Earth. Ecological theorist Timothy Morton uses the metaphor of the “mesh” to express this idea of human/non-human interconnectedness. This project maps the formal and thematic strategies through which contemporary narrative practices engage with the non-human and envisage this interconnectedness.


Comparing fictional narratives in print (novels and short stories) and conversational storytelling, the project explores the ways in which narrative can forge connections across levels of reality, weaving together the human and the non-human into a single plot. The assumption is that narrative is a field where fictional practices are in constant dialogue with stories told in everyday conversation—and with the culture-wide beliefs and concerns those stories reflect. The project builds on a combination of methods (close readings of novels, qualitative research), aiming to open up a new field of study at the intersection of literary scholarship and the social sciences—with narrative theory serving as a catalyst for the interdisciplinary exchange.

Project website: