Ethics, Literature, and idea: An Introductory Reader brings jointly the paintings of up to date students, lecturers, and writers into full of life dialogue at the ethical function of literature and the connection among aesthetics, artwork, and ethics.
Do the wealthy descriptions and narrative shapings of literature offer a worthy source for readers, writers, philosophers, and daily humans to visualize and confront the final word questions of existence? Do the human actions of storytelling and intricate ethical decision-making have a deep connection? What are the ethical duties of the artist, critic, and reader? What can spiritual perspectives—from Catholic to Protestant to Mormon—contribute to literary feedback? What will we suggest once we speak about moral feedback and the way does this fluctuate from the typical thought of censorship?
Thirty popular participants think about those questions together with: literary theorists Marshall Gregory, James Phelan, and Wayne Booth;...
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Additional resources for Ethics, Literature, and Theory
Dante Alighieri Chapter 1 Premises on Art and Morality John Gardner In this selection from On Moral Fiction, Gardner argues that art should have “a clear positive moral effect,” providing models for imitation, offering truths on the human condition, and giving a worldview that is life affirmative. Artists who reject this view, saying that they write only for themselves or that the primary focus of art should be on the freakish or marginalized, are wrong on both counts. If life indeed has universal values, and art is to some degree a representation of life, then art must in some measure deal with universal ideals such as Truth, Goodness, and Beauty.
Each of the four sections focuses on a different but related set of questions. The first, “Ethical Criticism and Literary Theory,” examines lines of thought such as: Are art and morality connected, and if so, what are the moral responsibilities of the artist, critic, and reader? What, exactly, is ethical criticism and how does it differ from common notions of censorship? And why, for the past three decades, has literary theory absented itself from the concerns of moral philosophy? The next section, “Philosophy, Religion, and Literature,” adds to this discussion by examining the broader relationships among the three disciplines, including: What does literature offer to the study of moral philosophy?
In our current awareness, there is no such thing as a person who is simply bad or good. Such a person is disturbed, deprived of love, paranoid, frustrated, filled with all sorts of complexes inherited by his or her parents or surroundings. On the other hand, a pleasant and good character in a novel cannot be accepted at face value without causing us to suspect that the goodness and charity that character reflects are no more than responses to hidden and crooked impulses, whose mantle of righteousness can be pulled aside to allow them to cause damage to their environment.