The Philosophy of Literature / Edition 1

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A comprehensive study by one of its leading exponents of central issues in the philosophy of literature, including the idea of literature as art, the nature and ontology of literary works, the status of the author, the modes and assessment of literary interpretation, the nature of fiction and fictional characters, the role of truth and knowledge in the appreciation of literature, and the basis for literary evaluation. Throughout the book philosophical discussion is illustrated with examples from poems, novels and drama of all periods. The book not only presents and analyses a range of views on these and other topics but also develops its own distinctive point of view. What emerges is a definitive and authoritative characterisation of a relatively new but increasingly influential branch of aesthetics.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The image Lamarque offers is an extremely attractive one, and it reminds us of why this is such an exciting and important field. The Philosophy of Literature is a smart, original, and erudite book, and it deserves to be widely read. Philosophers of literature will not be able to live without it." (John Gibson, Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, vol 68, 2010)

"Peter Lamarque's splendid and informative book, The Philosophy of Literature ... is brimful with insights into the nature of literature, and into the debates between philosophers interested in literature, and I cannot imagine anyone failing to learn from it." (Simon Blackburn, British Journal of Aesthetics, Vol. 50, 2010)

"[Lamarque] is always admirably clear and the rich use of literary sources in this work to illustrate the philosophical arguments also makes the book generally compelling reading. From this viewpoint, the work deserves a wide readership and may be highly recommended not just to others working at the cutting edge in this field, but also to students at all levels of university study and research and to the general educated reader." (David Carr, Analysis Reviews Vol 69, Number 3, July 2009)

"In its entirety, Lamarque’s book is a comprehensive study which is admirably sensitive to literary art. His philosophical analyses and the clarifying interplay between the philosophy of literature and literary criticism have significance not only to philosophers but literary critics, too. Beyond this, Lamarque has the gift of treating complicated and subtle philosophical theories in a lucid and intelligible way… [B]esides introducing the central issues in the philosophy of literature the book also gives an extensive historical survey on the topics, which will make it very useful for teaching. Philosophy of Literature is a work which advances strong theses and simultaneously pays respect to opposing views. Whether or not the reader agrees with the main conclusions of the work, Lamarque’s lucid arguments are nourishment for the brain." (Philosophy & Literature, vol 33, 2009)

"Lamarque presents a thoughtfully measured approach to a potentially overwhelming topic." (CHOICE, March 2009)

"Appropriately for a book that presents itself as an introduction to the field, Lamarque gives a historical overview of various sub-topics in the philosophy of literature as well as supplementary readings for each chapter." (Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews, March 2009)

"An excellent introduction to the philosophy of literature or as an additional text for aesthetics or literature modules." (Times Higher Education Supplement)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781405121989
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 6/30/2008
  • Series: Foundations of the Philosophy of the Arts Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 344
  • Sales rank: 1,264,039
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter Lamarque is Professor of Philosophy at the University of York. He is the author of Fictional Points of View (1996) and co-author, with Stein Haugom Olsen, of Truth, Fiction and Literature: A Philosophical Perspective (1994). He was editor of the British Journal of Aesthetics from 1995-2008, and is on the editorial board of the Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism. He edited Philosophy and Fiction (1983), Concise Encyclopedia of the Philosophy of Language (1997), and (with Stein Haugom Olsen) Aesthetics and the Philosophy of Art: The Analytic Tradition, An Anthology (Blackwell, 2003).
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Table of Contents

1 Art 1

2 Literature 29

3 Authors 84

4 Practice 132

5 Fiction 174

6 Truth 220

7 Value 255

Bibliography 297

Index 314

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