Fiction as action

Philosophia 31 (3-4):513-529 (2004)
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Several accounts of the nature of fiction have been proposed that draw on speech act theory. I argue that speech act theory is insufficient for this task. Martinich’s, Searle’s and Currie’s accounts are considered and rejected. However dependent fiction may be on the intentional structure of communication, focus on this structure diverts attention from works themselves in an unhelpful way. The weakness inherent in speech act theory is that it does not have the resources to capture the most interesting processes of interpretation in our engagement with fictions, those by which we construct their content and those through which they achieve their intended effects.



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Sarah Hoffman
University of Saskatchewan

Citations of this work

Predelli on Fictional Discourse.Manuel García-Carpintero - 2022 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 80 (1):83-94.
‘Truth in Fiction’ Reprised.Manuel García-Carpintero - 2022 - British Journal of Aesthetics 62 (2):307-324.
The structure of semantic norms.Jeffrey Kaplan - 2023 - Analytic Philosophy 64 (4):373-391.
That’s the Fictional Truth, Ruth.Peter Alward - 2010 - Acta Analytica 25 (3):347-363.

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References found in this work

The Logical Status of Fictional Discourse.John R. Searle - 1975 - New Literary History 6 (2):319--32.
A theory of fiction.Aloysius Martinich - 2001 - Philosophy and Literature 25 (1):96-112.

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