Volume 10, Issue 38 (2017)                   LCQ 2017, 10(38): 33-57 | Back to browse issues page

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Ghaffary M. A Comparative Study of Analytic and Continental Philosophy of Literature, With an Apology for Analytic Philosophy of Literature. LCQ. 2017; 10 (38) :33-57
URL: http://journals.modares.ac.ir/article-29-6523-en.html
Arak University, Arak 38156-8-8349, Iran, Faculty of Letters and Humanities, Department of English
Abstract:   (981 Views)
Although since classical times philosophical reflections on the nature and functions of literature have not been uncommon, the “philosophy of literature,” as a separate discipline or field, is a new phenomenon. The two approaches distinguished in Western philosophy since about a century ago, i.e., analytic vs. Continental philosophy, can be observed in philosophy of literature as well. Adopting a comparative method, this essay first examines the differences between analytic and Continental philosophy and, then, those between analytic and Continental philosophy of literature. The focus of this essay is on the analytic philosophy of literature since it seems this kind of philosophy, with its logical and realist method of conceptual analysis, can help us better in understanding the nature and functions of literature. The basic claim of this essay, then, is that Continental philosophy of literature is itself another manifestation of literature and only increases the ambiguity and mystification of the concept of literature. In order to give meaning to life and consequently to literature, Continental philosophers, like literary creators, have recourse to “metaphysical or logocentric metaphors” and “philosophical fictions.” However, the products of these attempts almost have the same functions and effects as those of literature. Of course, this is not to deny the value of the Continental approach; rather, as discussed at the end of the essay, in my view, what we need more in the current critical situation in Iran is analytic philosophy of literature rather than Continental philosophy of literature, because by concentrating on the analysis of the concept of literature and other related concepts the analytic approach prepares the ground for acquiring a more precise understanding of this field, and it is only then that we can adopt the Continental method for exploring the other aspects of literature.
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Received: 2017/03/11 | Accepted: 2017/07/23 | Published: 2017/09/3
* Corresponding Author Address: Arak

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