Religious Studies 47 (2):141-163 (2011)
AbstractDeath and futility are among a cluster of themes that closely track discussions of life’s meaning. Moreover, futility is thought to supervene on naturalistic meta-narratives because of how they will end. While the nature of naturalistic meta-narrative endings is part of the explanation for concluding that such meta-narratives are cosmically or deeply futile, this explanation is truncated. I argue that the reason the nature of the ending is thought to be normatively important is first anchored in the fact that narrative ending qua ending is thought to be normatively important. Indeed, I think futility is often thought to characterize naturalistic meta-narratives because a narrative’s ending has significant proleptic power to elicit a wide range of broadly normative human responses on, possibly, emotional, aesthetic, and moral levels towards the narrative as a whole.
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References found in this work
The Sense of an Ending: Studies in the Theory of Fiction with a New Epilogue.Frank Kermode - 1967 - New York: Oxford University Press.