PAGE SIX  -  Dashing Genius: 
Emily Dickinson and the Punctuation of Cognition
Intro | Page Two | Page Three | Page Four | Page Five | Page Six | Works Cited
(1) During a 1996 summer study group for Cal Poly graduate students, two-thirds of the members dropped out after attempting less than fifty pages of Sterne's Tristram Shandy
(2) Dan Lombardo, Curator of The Jones Library in Amherst, Massachusetts, finds no listing for Tristram Shandy in the catalogs of books owned in the nineteenth century. Based on A History of Amherst, Massachusetts: 1731-1896, Diana Marmaluk (of Beaver College) indicated via e-mail that the Amherst Town Library only contained 595 books in 1877. 
(3) Jonathan Morse (of the University of Hawaii at Manoa) suggested these terms in private electronic mail correspondence dated October 18, 1996: "You sound as if you're about to join in an exciting in the battle between what I guess could be called functionalists and accidentalists, or Susan Howe vs. Ralph Franklin."
(4) On electronic discussion lists devoted to Dickinson, the ultimate compliment is "You obviously dwell in possibility."
(5) I refer to poems and letters by number (preceded either by P or L) and rely on Thomas H. Johnson's The Complete Poems of Emily Dickinson and Emily Dickinson: Selected Letters
(6) I've made a rudimentary attempt to examine the Latin roots of Dickinson's vocabulary based on my current self-study of Latin and the classic Cassell's Latin Dictionary
(7) Associating spiders with neurons challenges Jeanne Holland's controversial 1994 reading of "Alone and in a Circumstance" (P 1167). Holland postulated that a spider crawled on the poet's "bare bottom" in the bathroom, an assumption which generated outrage (157, 178). Although Holland fails to credit him, David Porter actually initiated this toilet reading in a 1974 article, as Jerrald Ranta points out. Holland further interprets the pasting of a locomotive stamp and two strips of text from a literary review of George Sand upon poem 1167 as "a phallus" between spread legs (147). The fact that nineteenth-century science frequently compared the mind to a locomotive promises significance on a more intellectual level.
Author: Elizabeth Howell Brunner