Date of Award

Spring 5-10-2023

Author's School

Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts

Author's Department

Graduate School of Art

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Illustration & Visual Culture

Degree Type



This essay explores the potential for narrative art (film, literature, comics) to be a transformative experience in the life of the consumer (viewer, reader) through a sensuous, embodied interaction with that work of narrative art. Drawing from film, narrative and comics theory as well as primary sources, I show that there is potential for consumers to engage in reading and viewing in an embodied way that allows them to take on these experiences as new memories, highlighting the ability of art to engage our senses in a manner that is similar to everyday lived experiences. In contrast with some theories that challenge the “realness” of these mediated experiences, or relegate narratives to the sidelines of fiction and fantasy, I find that the immersive experiences of art are not only constructed from real, lived experiences, but indeed make up significant portions of those experiences. Furthermore, reading and viewing can potentially offer healing and transformation of the person in a way that remedies lived experience.



Program Chair

John Hendrix