Unrealistic Fictions

American Philosophical Quarterly 48 (1):33--46 (2011)
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Abstract

In this paper, we develop an analysis of unrealistic fiction that captures the everyday sense of ‘unrealistic’. On our view, unrealistic fictions are a species of inconsistent fictions, but fictions for which such inconsistency, given the supporting role we claim played by genre, needn’t be a critical defect. We first consider and reject an analysis of unrealistic fiction as fiction that depicts or describes unlikely events; we then develop our own account and make an initial statement of it: unrealistic fictions are those that invite us to believe something false. We further develop this account and restate it in terms of the notion of “import-export inconsistency.” That is, unrealistic fictions invite us to import certain propositions true in the actual world then invite us to export propositions entailing the negation of those imported. Finally, we consider whether for fiction being unrealistic is always an aesthetic flaw.

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Author Profiles

Allan Hazlett
Washington University in St. Louis
Christy Mag Uidhir
University of Houston

Citations of this work

Moral Persuasion and the Diversity of Fictions.Shen-yi Liao - 2013 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 94 (3):269-289.
Explanations: Aesthetic and Scientific.Shen-yi Liao - 2014 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 75:127-149.
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The Epistemic Misuse & Abuse of Pictorial Caricature.Christy Mag Uidhir - 2013 - American Philosophical Quarterly 50 (2):137-152.
Historical Inaccuracy in Fiction.Iskra Fileva - 2019 - American Philosophical Quarterly 56 (2):155-170.

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References found in this work

Truth in fiction.David K. Postscripts to Lewis - 1978 - American Philosophical Quarterly 15 (1):37--46.
The puzzle of imaginative resistance.Tamar Szabo Gendler - 2000 - Journal of Philosophy 97 (2):55-81.
The Puzzle of Imaginative Resistance.Tamar Szabo Gendler - 2000 - Journal of Philosophy 97 (2):55.
Invitation.[author unknown] - 1998 - Human Studies 21 (3):327-328.

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