Understanding Real and Fictional Persons: Narrative Negotiations Seen Through Cognitive Poetics

Philosophical Papers 45 (1-2):241-265 (2016)
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Abstract

Narrative theories of personal identity have traditionally taken literary characters as models to better understand how our identities are constituted through the narratives of our lives. However, there have been several recent criticisms of these comparisons, showing that philosophers of personal identity paid no attention to the nature of literary characters, and consequently, these philosopher’s comparisons were under-motivated. In the present article, I rely on a cognitive framework to define literary characters. From that point of view, I assert that it is fruitful to compare ourselves with literary characters to understand the role that the narratives told by others about ourselves play in the constitution of our own personal identities.

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Alfonso Muñoz-Corcuera
Complutense University of Madrid

References found in this work

Consciousness Explained.William G. Lycan - 1993 - Philosophical Review 102 (3):424.
Intentional systems.Daniel C. Dennett - 1971 - Journal of Philosophy 68 (February):87-106.
Truth in fiction.David K. Postscripts to Lewis - 1978 - American Philosophical Quarterly 15 (1):37--46.
After Virtue: A Study in Moral Theory.Samuel Scheffler - 1983 - Philosophical Review 92 (3):443.
Sources of the Self: The Making of Modern Identity.Charles Taylor - 1994 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 54 (1):187-190.

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