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Literature and Moral UnderstandingA Philosophical Essay on Ethics, Aesthetics, Education, and Culture$
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Frank Palmer

Print publication date: 1992

Print ISBN-13: 9780198242321

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198242321.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 30 November 2020

Life in Art

Life in Art

(p.127) 6 Life in Art
Literature and Moral Understanding

Frank Palmer

Oxford University Press

If people have no feeling whatsoever for the difference between life and life as represented in art, people should have no sense of embarrassment in making the most pedantic of objections to fiction which presents people with events which could not occur in real life. Though fiction is not a speculative hypothesis, it is not some sealed-off realm in which anything goes. However, even if people have some sense of what is appropriate or convincing within a particular genre, that in itself does not mean that people's understanding of life does not inform or bear upon what is understood in fiction. There is always an element of truth in fiction, but one which should prevent people from drawing too firm a line between art and life.

Keywords:   life, art, genre, fiction, truth

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