Fiction, Philosophy and Literary Theory: Will the Real Saul Kripke Please Stand Up?

Overview

This book brings together three main topics - deconstruction, philosophy of language, and literary theory - that have figured centrally in Christopher Norris's work over the past two decades. It offers a refreshingly clear and vigorous statement of his views as to how ‘theory' might profit from a greater awareness of current philosophical debates while philosophy might likewise gain by adopting a more open-minded attitude toward developments in literary theory. Most significant here is Norris's continuing ...

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Overview

This book brings together three main topics - deconstruction, philosophy of language, and literary theory - that have figured centrally in Christopher Norris's work over the past two decades. It offers a refreshingly clear and vigorous statement of his views as to how ‘theory' might profit from a greater awareness of current philosophical debates while philosophy might likewise gain by adopting a more open-minded attitude toward developments in literary theory. Most significant here is Norris's continuing exploration of the various points of contact between Jacques Derrida's thought and the kinds of concern - especially with issues in philosophical semantics and speech-act theory - that have preoccupied thinkers in the ‘other', mainstream-analytic line of descent. However his focus is consistently on matters that should be of interest to philosophers and literary theorists alike.

Thus Norris devotes some penetrating commentary to topics such as modal or ‘possible-worlds' logic as it bears upon issues in narrative theory; the ‘two cultures' (science versus literature) controversy; the different ways in which literary theory has alternately embraced and rejected the appeal to ‘scientific' modes of analysis; and some possible reasons for Wittgenstein's well-known aversion to Shakespeare. He also suggests a novel approach to the free-will/determinism issue by way of debates about the nature of language and the scope it affords for expressive creativity despite - or owing to - the limits imposed by various structural constraints.

Altogether this important new book provides a welcome overview of the author's current thinking and an equally welcome enlargement of horizons in contrast to the narrowly specialised character of much present-day academic discourse.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826497567
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Publication date: 8/28/2007
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 6.36 (w) x 9.17 (h) x 0.79 (d)

Meet the Author


Christopher Norris is the author of numerous books on aspects of philosophy, critical theory, and modern intellectual history. He is Distinguished Research Professor in Philosophy at the University of Cardiff and has taught at many universities in India, Australia, Spain, Germany, Canada, China, the US, and elsewhere.
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Table of Contents


Introduction     1
Deconstruction, Analysis and Deviant Logic: Derrida 'At The Limits of Thought'     9
Ethics, Normativity and Deconstruction     35
Saussurean Linguistics as Model and Metaphor: The Structuralist 'Revolution' Revisited     77
Translation to Tralfamadore: Images of Science in Literary Theory     107
Will the Real Saul Kripke Please Stand Up? Fiction, Philosophy and Possible Worlds     134
Extraordinary Language: Why Wittgenstein Didn't Like Shakespeare     159
Free-Will, Creativity and Structural Constraint: Linguistics as a Guide to Metaphysics     212
Index     261
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