Philosophia 35 (2):145-159 (2007)

Authors
James Harold
Mount Holyoke College
Abstract
The topic of this essay is how non-realistic novels challenge our philosophical understanding of the moral significance of literature. I consider just one case: Joseph Heller’s Catch-22. I argue that standard philosophical views, based as they are on realistic models of literature, fail to capture the moral significance of this work. I show that Catch-22 succeeds morally because of the ways it resists using standard realistic techniques, and suggest that philosophical discussion of ethics and literature must be pluralistic if it is to include all morally salient literature, and not just novels in the “Great Tradition” and their ilk.
Keywords Resistance   Ethical Criticism   Genre   Moral Education
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DOI 10.1007/s11406-007-9065-9
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References found in this work BETA

The Expression of Feeling in Imagination.Richard Moran - 1994 - Philosophical Review 103 (1):75-106.
The Moral Psychology of Fiction.Gregory Currie - 1995 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 73 (2):250 – 259.
The Thread of Life.Richard Wollheim - 1984 - The Personalist Forum 1 (1):55-58.

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Citations of this work BETA

Moral Persuasion and the Diversity of Fictions.Shen-yi Liao - 2013 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 94 (3):269-289.

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