Novels in the Everyday: An Aesthetic Investigation

Estetika 56 (2):206-222 (2019)

Authors
Kalle Puolakka
University of Helsinki
Abstract
Everyday aestheticians have had relatively little to say about literature. Inspired by Peter Kivy’s philosophy of literature as laid out in his books The Performance of Reading and Once-Told Tales, I examine reading literature as a part of everyday life. I argue that not only do Kivy’s views help explain the value that avid readers place on their daily silent engagement with a book, but that his philosophy of literature also shows how literary works can have an aesthetic presence in our everyday lives even during periods in-between reading a book. In light of the paper, literary reading turns out to be an artistic routine that fills avid readers’ everyday lives in a very literal sense.
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