Drawing on a wealth of references from Aristophanes to Eudora Welty, from Fernando Pessoa to Orhan Pamuk, from Cavafy to hypertext stories, Jusdanis reminds us that the arts have always been under attack. Others have withdrawn into a numbed silence. Moreover, contemporary philosophers may speak of art or the aesthetic in ways relevant to my analysis. This double role of the chorus, as performers and members of the polis, highlights the dual capacity of art, to provide pleasure and a social purpose at the same time. It is fiction that claims to be true.
People often feel that they have to choose between these two aspects of the aesthetic experience—beauty versus place, form versus action, and pleasure versus duty. While we have deconstructed inherited justifications of literature, we have been neither willing nor able to offer others in their place at any level of education, from elementary school to university. I've never done anything for you. Well, sure; I didn't need to read an entire book about it, though. It represents a powerful effort to think through the issues that have surrounded the academic debate about the study of literature and to arrive at a full understanding of its centrality to the institutional processes of human life, and most especially to the reflective consciousness upon which any form of civilized life must depend. Summary In this path-breaking new work, Gregory Jusdanis asks why literature matters. Our capacity to imagine something new, to project ourselves into the mind of another person, and to fight for a new world is based on this distinction.
Our imagined worlds profoundly affect our real ones, affording opportunities to change realities in significant ways. Why are we afraid to admit our pleasures of reading, to defend the arts to the school board, to discuss the importance of literature in life? Jusdanis highlights the political dimension of aesthetic judgement by quoting Hanna Arendt: »Culture and politics, then, belong together because it is not knowledge or truth which is at stake, but rather judgment and decision, the judicious exchange of opinion about the sphere of public life and the common world. Friendship from the Iliad to the Internet 2014. §1 Overture and Themes Who wants poets in such lean years? But it would not be possible to consider the fate of literature today without posing wider questions of art and aesthetics. Gregory Jusdanis asks hard questions: Does literature matter? Having read an early draft of the manuscript, Jochen Schulte-Sasse suggested a number of revisions. Jusdanis asks hard questions: Does literature matter? Although I can easily get hooked by a novel or film, or find myself unable to move away from certain paintings, I have often stumbled when trying to explain why this experience is important in academic language.
Drawing on a wealth of references from Aristophanes to Eudora Welty, from Fernando Pessoa to Orhan Pamuk, from Cavafy to hypertext stories, Jusdanis reminds us that the arts have always been under attack. German, English, French and Serbian literature. Museums attract thousands of visitors to even less well-known traditions, such as the Byzantine or Ottoman. Fairchild, Beauty I envy these men. Jusdanis asks hard questions: Does literature matter? Instead, I got a whole bunch of shaky examples of how a play or poem or hypertext piece mattered kind of that one time. He takes into account the theoretical discussions of the last thirty years as well as our new social realities.
But what type of autonomy can we now imagine for literature today when the expansive textuality of the Internet and the amphibian World Wide Web threaten to capsize the values of the book age? Why are we afraid to admit our pleasures of reading, to defend the arts to the school board, to discuss the importance of literature in life? The history of friendship demonstrates that human beings are a mutually supportive species with an innate aptitude to envision and create ties with others. The fact that it's something completely exclusive to 5th century Athens he tries to explain it away by subsuming other literary devices beneath its umbrella -- not entirely successfully , whatever, right? For Jusdanis this distinction between two kinds of autonomy is vital for his defence of art. Jusdanis has laid forth a provocative and interesting reflection on the current state of literature and its place in the world. Why are we afraid to admit our pleasures of reading, to defend the arts to the school board, to discuss the importance of literature in life? This state of being divorced yet yoked constitutes the reality of literature. This definition of autonomous art forms a basic building block in the theory of parabasis he expounds throughout his study. Drawing on a wealth of references from Aristophanes to Eudora Welty, from Fernando Pessoa to Orhan Pamuk, from Cavafy to hypertext stories, Jusdanis reminds us that the arts have always been under attack. Jusdanis sees in hypertext literature the potential for further transmutations of the parabatic as it can transform »the old tension between verity and invention into a conflict between the real and the virtually real« 116.
But I wasn't quite convinced. For many, friendship is more meaningful than familial ties. In short, art has social impact as Jusdanis stresses in the preface to his book. If we—and here I speak of myself as a teacher of literature—cannot provide our students a rationale for taking classes of literature, as opposed to those in history, geography, economics, or psychology, why should they honestly come? For Jusdanis such a diagnosis is not valid as »perceptible markers between art and nonart« 33 continue to exist. Is the only plausible case we can make the one of free speech, no matter how noble that argument is? Stanford strives to post only content for which we have licensed permission or that is otherwise permitted by copyright law.
What binds these strands together in my theory is the human need for simulation. Our capacity to imagine something new, to project ourselves into the mind of another person, and to fight for a new world is based on this distinction. Jusdanis does take care, however, to stress that not all literature is subversive. Plato and Aristotle, for instance, understand as poetry what we regard as literature. The parabatic means that literature foregrounds the »difference between life and fiction, highlighting itself as a place of and for simulation« 57. He takes care to point out that in the face of this historical outreach the changing concept of art throughout the ages has to be kept in mind. This aesthetic experience does not only grant us pleasure, but by raising our awareness of the contingent nature of reality it also takes on a political dimension.
Jusdanis points out, however, that this complicity is often portrayed in literary works themselves, e. Art, broadly defined, attends those boundaries between real and the imagined worlds, between matter and mind, body and soul. Or they allow such enthusiasm to students only. Yet from its fictional universe, we are also able to gaze back at the actual one, criticize it, see alternatives, or seek to transform it. For other permission, please contact. Gregory Jusdanis asks hard questions: Does literature matter? Our capacity to imagine something new, to project ourselves into the mind of another person, and to fight for a new world is based on this distinction. We once believed that culture made us into better human beings, that we could find solutions to our problems in literature, or that art provided us with solace for the imperfections and injustices of life.
He emphasizes that critics who denounce art because of »its self-conscious interiority, its celebration of form, and its apparent indifference to injustice« 36 can only do so by ignoring the historical situation in which these two forms of autonomy emerged. According to Jusdanis, our inability to explain why literature matters results in dropping student numbers and severe budget cuts in the realm of the arts. And how often did Roland Greene help me, though we have met only twice? The third chapter deals with the social and the ideological autonomy of art. His insightful observations invite further research as a wealth of other literary examples come to mind which could also be drawn on to substantiate his theses. Here is a critic engaged with issues of importance to any thinking person. The ability to distinguish between the actual and the imaginary is essential to human beings. The literary case studies Jusdanis discusses in order to illuminate what he means by parabasis contribute to an enrichment of his argument.
And what is more, why fund literary studies? Jusdanis' valiantly-titled In Defense of Literature pretty heady , ther Years ago, before I read and met friends who loved reading as much as I do, I remember being in a used bookshop and getting struck with the horrible feeling that fiction was futile. It is time to move beyond this predictable reaction to the mere mention of the words art, beauty, literature, aesthetic experience, and literary value. At the same time, the position of literature in society—always unstable—has become more precarious. Here is a critic engaged with issues of importance to any thinking person. Such a view is blind for the social function art fulfils on the basis of its autonomy. In short, though we love art for its inventive potential, there is something beyond personal delight in our attraction that is political. « 63 As such, this insight may not strike one as radically new.