By Tzachi Zamir
Hamlet tells Horatio that there are extra issues in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in his philosophy. In Double imaginative and prescient , thinker and literary critic Tzachi Zamir argues that there are extra issues in Hamlet than are dreamt of--or no less than conceded--by such a lot philosophers. Making an unique and persuasive case for the philosophical worth of literature, Zamir means that yes vital philosophical insights might be received in simple terms via literature. yet such insights can't be reached if literature is deployed only as a cultured sugaring of a conceptual tablet. Philosophical wisdom isn't really against, yet is consonant with, the literariness of literature. by means of concentrating on the adventure of examining literature as literature and never philosophy, Zamir units a theoretical framework for a philosophically orientated literary feedback that might charm either to philosophers and literary critics.
Double imaginative and prescient is anxious with the philosophical figuring out triggered by way of the classy event of literature. Literary works can functionality as credible philosophical arguments--not ones during which claims are conclusively verified, yet within which claims are made believable. Such claims, Zamir argues, are embedded inside an experiential constitution that's itself a vital size of figuring out. constructing an account of literature's relation to wisdom, morality, and rhetoric, and advancing philosophical-literary readings of Richard III, Macbeth, Romeo and Juliet, Othello, Antony and Cleopatra, Hamlet , and King Lear , Zamir exhibits how his method can open up prevalent texts in spectacular and worthwhile ways.
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Additional info for Double Vision: Moral Philosophy and Shakespearean Drama
26) The language of cultural materialism or Marxist critique cannot quite replace such singular moments that enforce on the reader particular sufferings and the ways they are organized within oppressive systems. My reply 32 MORAL BASIS to my Marxist critic is then, in sum, that literature is surely politically dangerous, as it can promote smugness and curtail moral sensitivity to the culturally oppressed precisely as it commends its readers for their subtle aesthetic responsiveness. But this danger should not eliminate literature’s opposite capacity—namely, forming and conveying chillingly accurate representations of suffering and abuse that are masked by culturally available discursive means.
Yet an earlymodern theatergoer who would relate to this as exhibiting conventional female passivity would have been “corrected” in this view by consideration of Cleopatra showing more active ways in which female sexuality can be channeled. People may sympathize with the way Romeo’s passion overrides all other considerations. But a Titania, a Phaedra, or a Tarquin will remind them that the same power that can cause overwhelming love can create the sort of blindness that leads to falling in love with an ass, with one’s stepson, or can set in motion the underlying mechanisms of rape.
One hardly sees in fathers, even highly caring and affectionate ones. Such an ontological outlook obviously assumes that unlike chairs, waterfalls, and rainbows that either exist or do not, abstract entities like motherhood, compassion, or cruelty can have greater or lesser substance and presence, and that such dimensions of reality come in different degrees of sharpness. Ducasse and Nussbaum spoke of “living more” through art in the sense of art’s ability to broaden our experience. We need to add to this something relating to the qualitative difference of such living.