Philosophy and Literature 29 (1):130-145 (2005)

James Harold
Mount Holyoke College
Two recent novels, Ian McEwan’s Atonement and Margaret Atwood’s The Blind Assassin, are philosophically instructive. These books are interesting, I argue, because they reveal something about understanding and appreciating narrative. They show us that audience’s participation in narrative is much more subtle and complex than philosophers generally acknowledge. An analysis of these books reveals that narrative imagining is not static or unified, but dynamic and multipolar. I argue that once the complexity of narrative engagement is better understood, some prominent philosophical problems and debates concerning narrative dissolve.
Keywords narrative  imagination  literature
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DOI 10.1353/phl.2005.0005
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References found in this work BETA

Fearing Fictions.Kendall L. Walton - 1978 - Journal of Philosophy 75 (1):5-27.
The Moral Psychology of Fiction.Gregory Currie - 1995 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 73 (2):250 – 259.
A Strange Kind of Sadness.Marcia M. Eaton - 1982 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 41 (1):51-63.
In Search of a Narrative.Matthew Kieran - 2003 - In Matthew Kieran & Dominic Lopes (eds.), Imagination, Philosophy, and the Arts. Routledge. pp. 69--87.

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Citations of this work BETA

Ideal Presence: How Kames Solved the Problem of Fiction and Emotion.Eva Dadlez - 2011 - Journal of Scottish Philosophy 9 (1):115-133.

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