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  1.  1
    Owen, Wittgenstein, and the Postwar Battle with Language.Ron Ben-Tovim - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):344-360.
    Differences in the work philosophy does and the work art does need not be slighted if it turns out that they cross paths, even to some extent share paths—for example, where they contest the ground on which the life of another is to be examined, call it the ground of therapy.The battlefields of war are often described as a separate world, planet, or universe, far removed from ordinary life. Literary examples of this perception can be seen in several modern works (...)
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  2.  4
    A Look and a Nod: Merleau-Ponty, Shakespeare, Heaney, and the Mediation of Form.Arthur A. Brown - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):311-322.
    The painter "takes his body with him."Nevertheless, Renoir was looking at the sea.Close! stand close to me, Starbuck; let me look into a human eye.The painter takes his body with him—he looks at what he sees and what he sees looks back at him. Perception takes place in the exchange, in time and in the world, not only between people or between living things but also between "subject" and "object," between perceiver and perceived. In this exchange that Maurice Merleau-Ponty calls (...)
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  3.  4
    Wittgenstein and Modernism.Michael Fischer - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):463-466.
    Even in a journal with the welcoming title Philosophy and Literature, contributors rightly feel obliged to explain why they are relating philosophical and literary texts to one another. Seeing literature as an engagingly vivid, "speaking picture" "figuring forth" the difficult abstractions of philosophy was once a default way of linking the two. But such a connection shortchanges the thinking at work in literature, reducing it to a popularizing tool, and overlooks the stories, examples, and metaphors that inform some powerful works (...)
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  4. Shelley's Vestimentary Poetics.Alexander Freer - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):292-310.
    Poetry appears in veils but is not concealed. The subjects of poetry are "clothed in its Elysian light" not to serve the vanity of poets but to make visible a measure of their inspiration.1 This claim, central to Percy Shelley's Defence of Poetry, finds few sympathetic ears. The metaphor of poetry's dress suggests to some that poets engage in obfuscation, if not reckless cover-up. William Hazlitt says as much in an 1824 review of Shelley's Posthumous Poems: "His Muse offers her (...)
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  5.  2
    When Nothing Follows: Rousseau's Literary Works as Science and Consolation.Joel From - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):361-375.
    In a letter drafted at age forty-eight, Jean-Jacques Rousseau confessed that he passed his days "vainly looking for solid attachments."1 Two years later, he again lamented that he had wasted much time pursuing attachments that "did not exist."2 At age fifty-eight, he confessed that he had "always felt some void."3 And, at the very end of his life, he still bemoaned that he had been cast "into the whirlwind of the world" only to discover that he "was not made to (...)
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  6. "Poetry" Versus "History" in Aristotle's Poetics.David Gallop - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):420-433.
    History, according to Aristotle, relates "things that happen ; whereas poetry's function is to relate the kinds of things that happen—that is, are possible in terms of probability or necessity."1 A generic clause, expressing "the kinds of things that happen" to certain kinds of agents, distinguishes the task of the poet from that of the historian.2 History speaks of "particulars," whereas poetry speaks more of "universals." A historian might assert, for example, that Alcibiades urged the Athenians to invade Sicily, or (...)
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  7. The Meaning of "Tyrannus" in Oedipus Tyrannus.Roy Glassberg - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):416-419.
    What are we to make of Sophocles's use of the term "Tyrannus"1 in the title of his tragedy Oedipus Tyrannus? Did he simply mean "king," as most translators would have it, or did he mean "tyrant" in the sense of despot—or some combination of both? A sampling of translations offered by Amazon yields seventeen titles using either "Rex" or "King," on the one hand, and three using "Tyrant."H. G. Liddell and Robert Scott define tyrannus as meaning an "absolute monarch unlimited (...)
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  8.  3
    Two Responses to Moral Luck.Andrew Ingram - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):434-439.
    I am going to discuss two fictional characters, each of whom embodies opposite reactions to the problem of moral luck identified by Thomas Nagel and Bernard Williams. The two characters are Noah Cross, played by John Huston in Roman Polanski's film Chinatown, and Father Zosima from Fyodor Dostoyevsky's novel The Brothers Karamazov. Cross takes the existence of moral luck as a reason to fly from moral responsibility. Zosima leaps in the opposite direction, toward unlimited moral responsibility. The responses are the (...)
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  9.  3
    David Hume in To the Lighthouse.Justin W. Keena - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):376-393.
    Imagine a reader expert in the scholarship on To the Lighthouse and yet ignorant of the novel itself. What would such a person, when finally sitting down to read it for the first time, know—or think they know—about its relationship to philosophy? Based solely on the reams of articles, book chapters, and monographs that place the novel in dialogue with one or more philosophers, the first-time reader of To the Lighthouse would predict with confidence and precision which thinkers are most (...)
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  10.  10
    Beauty and Sublimity: A Cognitive Aesthetics of Literature and the Arts by Patrick Colm Hogan.Radhika Koul - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):467-470.
    The classic questions of philosophical aesthetics—how and why human beings find certain works of art beautiful or sublime—suffered from something of a hiatus in the twentieth century, but the study of beauty has seen a return in recent years, often calling on rapidly evolving research in cognitive science and neuroscience for assistance. Patrick Colm Hogan's Beauty and Sublimity: A Cognitive Aesthetics of Literature and the Arts is an important contribution to the burgeoning interdisciplinary field of cognitive aesthetics. The book makes (...)
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  11.  9
    Two Myths of Sisyphus.Bruce Milem - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):440-443.
    [We present below a preliminary translation of an ancient Greek manuscript, recently discovered by Dr. __________, containing two variations on the myth of Sisyphus. The document is in fragments, with gaps at the beginning and partway through.… [Upon] his capture, Sisyphus was brought before the council of the gods, who were informed of all his crimes. After withdrawing from the chamber for many hours, they returned to sentence Sisyphus to his fate. He was doomed to roll a rock up a (...)
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  12.  2
    What Novels Speak About.Thomas Pavel - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):279-291.
    The first, easiest answer to the question "What do novels speak about?" is D. H. Lawrence's conviction that novels are about "man alive," as quoted at the beginning of Guido Mazzoni's recent book on the theory of the novel.1 In a slightly more explicit accounting, one could say that novels speak about human actions and passions. These answers are the first, because they are plausible and general. They are the easiest, because they state the obvious. And yet, precisely because they (...)
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  13.  6
    "Expel the Barbarian From Your Heart": Intimations of the Cyclops in Euripides's Hecuba.Zdravko Planinc - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):403-415.
    In memoriam: Mira Balija PlanincEuripides's Hecuba is not one of the best-known tragedies. The story is vividly memorable, however. Troy has fallen. The Greeks have finished their killing and plundering and have begun their homeward journey. As soon as they cross the Hellespont and make camp on what some might call the European side, in Thrace, they bury Achilles. The Trojan queen, Hecuba, is enslaved, as are the only two of her daughters who remain alive, Polyxena and Cassandra, the latter (...)
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  14.  1
    Consciousness: A Story.Robert Allan Richardson - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):394-402.
    Consciousness is known by the company it keeps. Story is its constant companion. This is the case even when it addresses itself to itself and says what it sees. It is like the pilot of a ship in one tale, but a thinking "I" in another. It is a theater where perceptions come and go, or an aviary where thoughts fly in and out like birds, or a stream. It is the manifestation of an immortal soul, or perhaps the first (...)
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  15.  2
    A Report on Experience.David Wemyss - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):444-462.
    In November 2002, a series of tutorials was advertised within the University of Cambridge. Neville Critchley—a lecturer in philosophy with a reputation for preferring literature—placed advertisements on college notice boards saying he wanted to hear from students not just philosophically or intellectually intrigued by language but literally made unwell by it. Four young people replied, one of whom subsequently provided me with an account of what passed in Room C28 at Emmanuel College. Almost thirteen years afterwards, this account was published (...)
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  16.  1
    Nietzsche Among the Novelists.Theodore Ziolkowski - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (2):323-343.
    The Weimar Nietzsche-Bibliographie, which is available online along with an exhaustive index, contains hundreds of entries, ranging from "absolute Musik" to "Zynismus." But despite references to his treatment in film and to the names of several novelists, it provides no rubric for Friedrich Nietzsche in novels or otherwise as a fictional figure.Yet the twenty-first century alone has already produced at least four such works, in addition to two others over the preceding eighty years—not to mention films in Italian and French. (...)
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  17.  4
    Richards and Williams: Spring and All and the Invention of Modernist Form.Dongho Cha - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):217-221.
    "The chief characteristic of poets," writes I. A. Richards in his well-known essay, "Science and Poetry," "is their amazing command of words".1 By this Richards does not mean that poetry can be written "by cunning and study, by craft and contrivance," that is, by "the technique of poetry added to a desire to write some"; his point is rather that "the ordering of the words" must spring from "an actual supreme ordering of experience." The true vocation of "genuine poetry" consists (...)
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  18.  5
    Escape From Plataea: Political and Intellectual Liberation in Thucydides's History.Bernard J. Dobski - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):201-216.
    A testament to the richness of Thucydides's History of the Peloponnesian War is that it has been studied for centuries with great profit by scholars of various stripes. Since the nineteenth century students of historiography have found in his narrative and methodological statements the principles by which Greeks of the fifth century BCE collected, recorded, and arranged material for their accounts of the ancient world. During the twentieth century international relations scholars, focusing on some of the more famous speeches of (...)
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  19.  3
    Narrative Rhyme and the Good Life.John E. MacKinnon - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):1-29.
    "Quite otherwise than the scientist, and far more than the historian," writes R. G. Collingwood, "the philosopher must go to school with the poets in order to learn the use of language, and must use it in their way: as a means of exploring one's own mind, and bringing to light what is obscure and doubtful in it." Whereas the poet "yields himself to every suggestion that his language makes," however, the philosopher's words are assembled "only to reveal the thought (...)
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  20.  18
    Virtue Ethics and Literary Imagination.Jay R. Elliott - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):244-256.
    Did Plato see something that Aristotle missed? According to a familiar narrative, Plato regarded literature as dangerous to the aims of philosophy, and he accordingly exiled the poets from his ideal republic. By contrast, Aristotle is supposed to have reconciled literature and philosophy, not only through his appreciative account of epic and tragedy in the Poetics but also through his invocations of literary examples at crucial junctures elsewhere in his corpus, for example his use of the Trojan legend of Priam (...)
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  21.  6
    The Character of Huckleberry Finn.Kristina Gehrman - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):125-144.
    Ever since Jonathan Bennett wrote about Huckleberry Finn's conscience in 1974, Mark Twain's young hero has played a small but noteworthy role in the moral philosophy and moral psychology literature. Following Bennett, philosophers read Huck as someone who consistently follows his heart and does the right thing in a pinch, firmly believing all the while that what he does is morally wrong.1 Specifically, according to this reading, Huck has racist beliefs that he never consciously questions; but in practice he consistently (...)
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  22.  4
    Wittgenstein and the Creativity of Language Ed. By Sebastian Sunday Grève and Jakub Mácha.Elinor Hållén - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):257-259.
    What is creativity? It is clearly something we know by seeing it manifested in a multitude of different ways and contexts. It could perhaps stand as an emblematic example of the limitations of a general explanative account. In this anthology the editors have orchestrated an exceptionally inspiring collection of essays that explore the vast examples of creative language used in Wittgenstein's philosophical practice and the creative potentiality of language overall. The anthology consists of eleven essays divided into introduction, overture, and (...)
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  23.  4
    The Art of "Reading-To" and the Post-Holocaust Suicide in Schlink's The Reader.Michael Lackey - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):145-164.
    The post-Holocaust suicide of a concentration camp survivor is particularly unsettling. One thinks, for instance, of Cliff Stern's devastated response to Professor Louis Levy's death in Woody Allen's movie Crimes and Misdemeanors. Loosely based on Primo Levi, Allen's professor provides in short documentary clips an astute analysis of the contradictions of a loving God in the Old Testament and stoically counsels embracing life despite the indifference and occasional cruelty of the universe. Having experienced, understood, and accepted the absurdity and injustice (...)
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  24.  7
    Rehearsing Better Worlds: Poetry as A Way of Happening in the Works of Tomlinson and MacDiarmid.Duncan Gullick Lien - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):185-200.
    W. H. Auden's dictum "poetry makes nothing happen" has an enduring currency in poetic criticism, quoted ad nauseam to support the view that poetic discourse must never fall subservient to political ends.1 Conventional wisdom would hold that Hugh MacDiarmid, a poet more often noted for his obstinate commitment to communism, patently failed to heed this dictum. Indeed, as Scott Lyall notes, MacDiarmid's political poems are almost never anthologized, suggesting that the poems in which MacDiarmid's political views are made explicit are (...)
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  25.  17
    Murder and Midwifery: Metaphor in the Theaetetus.Madeline Martin-Seaver - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):97-111.
    The Theaetetus's midwifery metaphor is well-known; less discussed is the brief passage accusing Socrates of behaving like Antaeus. Are philosophers midwives or monsters? Socrates accepts both characterizations. This passage and Socrates's acceptance of the metaphor creates a tension in the text, birthing a puzzle about how readers ought to understand the figure of the philosopher. Because metaphors play a pivotal role in the dialogue's ethical project, the puzzle presents not simply a textual tension but a question of how and why (...)
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  26.  6
    Literature and Happiness.D. J. Moores - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):260-277.
    Let your verse be the happy occurrenceSomehow within the restless morning windWhich goes about smelling of mint and thyme...And all the rest is literature.It's not lIterary unless it's depressing. Although this statement is unfounded, I often hear it from beginning students and nonacademics who believe that literature is always dark and dreary, and that literariness is tantamount to depictions of suffering, struggle, and tragedy. I typically respond to such comments in the usual English-professor way, pointing out that literature represents the (...)
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  27.  2
    The Merry Sufferer: Authentic Being in Samuel Beckett's Happy Days.Ivan Nyusztay - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):112-124.
    Merriness and suffering seldom accompany each other. Looking at Samuel Beckett's dramas we find human beings whose suffering is both primordial—simultaneous with their conception—and final, allowing no culmination or relief. The sufferers have become indifferent toward their suffering because of a palpable lack of an alternative. They have grown accustomed to their misery, since their life was never anything but misery. Needless to say, in Beckett this ubiquitous misery and suffering never appear in themselves. The extremities of human calamities presented (...)
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  28.  2
    But Then, A Moral Experiment.Petar Ramadanovic - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):230-235.
    Once upon a time, there was this pilot. His plane was about to crash and he had to choose whether to steer his plane to a less or a more inhabited area. You'd think his choice would be simple, right? But before you give your response, consider the following situation that is practically the same, only a bit different.A judge faces rioters. The crowd demands that the culprit be found guilty for a certain crime or else they will take revenge (...)
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  29.  4
    Mapping the Literary Text: Spatio-Cultural Theory and Practice.Bill Richardson - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):67-80.
    What is the relationship between place and cultural production? How do we account for the interaction between the domain of spatiality and that of artistic expression? In particular, how might we conceptualize the connections between space and literature? Here, I attempt to map the principal ways in which the central thematic issues we associate with literary expression are related to questions about space and place. By elucidating these matters, I hope to arrive at a rationale for an approach to setting (...)
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  30.  4
    Wittgenstein and the Craft of Reading: On Reckoning with the Imagination: Wittgenstein and the Aesthetics of Literary Experience, By Charles Altieri.Fred Rush - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):236-243.
    Charles Altieri's Reckoning with the Imagination: Wittgenstein and the Aesthetics of Literary Experience addresses a perceived problem in literary theory.1 That problem is how to reintegrate practices of "close reading" in a field dominated by "grand theory": deconstruction, postcolonial studies, queer studies, New Historicism, and other regimens. Unlike the New Criticism that controlled the reading, writing, and teaching of serious literature in the United States through the 1940s and '50s, in which intricate analysis of text as text was all, Altieri (...)
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  31.  7
    Flannery O'Connor's Mrs. Turpin, Hannah Arendt's Adolf Eichmann, and Dreams of Boxcars.Jennifer Ruth - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):165-184.
    What I learned from you and what helped me in the ensuing years to find my way around in reality without selling my soul to it the way people in earlier times sold their souls to the devil is that the only thing of importance is not philosophies but the truth, that one has to live and think in the open and not in one's own little shell, no matter how comfortably furnished it is, and that necessity in whatever form (...)
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  32.  1
    The Promethean Form: A Poet's Ontological Metamorphosis in Emerson's "Self-Reliance" and "The Poet".Trent Michael Sanders - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):222-229.
    What does Emerson want for himself and for us, or, put another way, what does he do in his writings as a whole? Can we understand Emerson's writings today? One critic, F. O. Matthiessen, in his American Renaissance: Art and Expression in the Age of Emerson and Whitman, pithily remarks that some of Emerson's philosophical essays are "generally unreadable";1 Len Gougeon, however, argues that we can know something about Emerson. Gougeon suggests that Emerson emphasizes the individual and the American political (...)
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  33.  8
    Oscar Wilde on the Theory of the Author.Andrea Selleri - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):49-66.
    That Oscar Wilde was a central figure for aestheticism needs no arguing; that he should be taken seriously as an aesthetician is perhaps a less obvious matter. While much of his work concerns itself with the traditional purview of aesthetics as a philosophical discipline, commentators have rarely granted his writings that attention to ideas qua ideas that marks off a philosophical interest in a writer's oeuvre from other types of analysis. A number of attempts to tackle Wilde's pronouncements in a (...)
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  34.  5
    Resisting the Habit of Tlön: Whitehead, Borges, and the Fictional Nature of Concepts.Michael L. Thomas - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):81-96.
    Our interpretations of experience determine the limits of what we can do with the world.Jorge Luis Borges's short stories act as narrative experiments with the potential to alter the reader's experience. They provide momentary glimpses into a remixed reality that, through their vivacity, allow us to wonder at the immanent possibilities that emerge when we acknowledge the irreality of language. This function of Borges's writing follows from his understanding of fictions as imaginative verbal constructions that are effective due to their (...)
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  35.  4
    The Artist as Prophet: Emerson's Thoughts on Art.Jeff Wieand - 2018 - Philosophy and Literature 42 (1):30-48.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson's thinking about art has never been at the forefront of either the philosophy of art or discussions of Emerson's own thought, in part perhaps because of doubts about the depth of his understanding of art. Percy Brown, for example, described Emerson's aesthetic sense as "deficient" and his aesthetic background as "somewhat limited," and claimed that Emerson "dwelt on abstract ideas rather than on the forms of art and its methods of expression."1But although Emerson was no John Ruskin (...)
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