Karin Wenz, Assistant Professor of English, University of Kassel

The term 'imagination' has the connotation of artistic creativity, fantasy and invention. This is the romantic view of imagination which has influenced our understanding of art since the 19th century. But creativity is only one aspect of imagination. The most important function of imagination is its capacity to organize mental representations into coherent units as Mark Johnson (1985: 140) pointed out. Imagination is central to our experience and cognition, and our reasoning about it. It permeates our embodied spatial, temporal and culturally formed understanding. Imagination functions as mediation between perception and categorization. It transforms the perception of realities into possibilities and in so far it is the basis of the creation of possible worlds -- the"As-If" of imagination.

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