Resumen: Though much has been written about narrative identity, this collection of essays privileges its possibilities from the perspective of theories of emotions. The following articles refer both to the ways in which emotions are represented in narratives, as well as how these representations assume a reader's emotional competence, dwelling on the numerous ways in which narrative empathy is enhanced. Through close readings of different contemporary narratives, this special issue illustrates the advantages of narrative in the portrayal of emotions: "Emotions are, unlike language, non-linear, imprecise, unstructured and diffuse. Therefore language is an inadequate medium to represent emotions, and 'telling,¿ that is, putting a simple label on an emotional state, is less engaging than 'showing' by a wide register of narrative means available to fiction" (Nikolajeva, 2014, p. 95).
In this context, the critical work included in this issue shows how investigating the representation of emotions in literary works requires an engagement with multiple aspects, which include: "the author's intention, the reception by the reader guided by his/her perceptions and assumptions, and the literary work's emotional structure' i.e., signals and markers that refer to emotional conditions and govern the reader's attitude towards the text" (Kümmerling-Meibauer, 2012, p. 131)