Volume 16, Issue 63 (2023)                   LCQ 2023, 16(63): 1-38 | Back to browse issues page

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pirouz G. A Reflection on the Interaction between Philosophy and Poetry: The Status of Poetry in the Contemporary World. LCQ 2023; 16 (63) :1-38
URL: http://lcq.modares.ac.ir/article-29-71252-en.html
Professor at Mazandaran University , pirouz_40@yahoo.com
Abstract:   (2438 Views)
Platonic discussions on the status of poetry have instigated long-lasting disputes between philosophy and poetry. Plato believed that compared to philosophy, poetry did not express the truth. Essentially, poetry could not access truth. It just lied and could, therefore, mislead. This approach resulted in poets' attempts to defend the nature of poetry for centuries; they changed poetry to a tool for expression of ethical, moral, and political concerns to maintain that even if poetry could not access truth, it could be useful in instructing people. Nonetheless, in the contemporary world where the nature of truth has been questioned and cast doubt on, Philosophy's defense of poetry has in fact led to a defense of the status of poetic ideology. Today, poetry, along with philosophy and science, is a medium to reflect a version of truth, a version which – like the truth of other media – is no more than a representation. In this research, I intend to examine Plato's ideas as well as the criticism of his ideology in recent decades; in addition, the approach of some Iranian researchers concerning the new modes of interaction between philosophy and poetry will be criticized to determine the relationship between poetry and philosophy with truth and to discuss the status of poetry in the contemporary world.
Extended Abstract
Introduction
Scholars have always been concerned with the ever-changing relationship between poetry and philosophy, a trend which has been the result of various political, social, religious, and intellectual outlooks. In Iran, the interaction between philosophy and poetry and its various implications have not been subject to much critical scrutiny. This is while Iran’s poetic history is richer than that of any other country. Therefore, discussions of this kind can help shed light on the nature of poetry and the new perspectives toward it. Furthermore, establishing the interaction between poetry and philosophy can result in a better understanding of the nature of poetry, its status, and its function in the contemporary world.
Nowadays, the prevalent ideology supports the fact that poetry, along with philosophy, science, and other intellectual endeavors, is a medium in itself, a medium which – endowed by its beautifully expressive language and content – bestows upon us an understanding of the world around us. In other words, it makes the world a tolerable place to live in by reorganizing and redefining truth, and showing it depth to poetry lovers.
Whereas the discussions on poetry and philosophy are accompanied by precise epistemological outlooks in the contemporary world, in Iran the relationship between poetry and philosophy is approached mostly through the traditional lens: poetry as symbolizing emotion and imagination and philosophy as representing logic and reason. Nonetheless, in the contemporary world where the nature of truth has been questioned and cast doubt on, philosophy's defense of poetry has in fact led to a defense of the status of poetic ideology. Today, poetry, along with philosophy and science, is a medium to reflect a version of truth, a version which – like the truth of other media – is no more than a representation. In this research, I intend to examine Plato's ideas as well as the criticism of his ideology in recent decades; in addition, the approach of some Iranian researchers concerning the new modes of interaction between philosophy and poetry will be criticized to determine the relationship between poetry and philosophy with truth and to discuss the status of poetry in the contemporary world.
To provide a fresh outlook on poetry in the contemporary world, this study attempts to respond to the following questions: why was Plato against poetry and art? How do his logic and arguments cast doubt on today? What effects do these questions have on a new understanding of poetry? From what aspects can the epistemological relationship between poetry and philosophy be examined? Considering the new philosophical analysis of poetry, what status does poetry have in the contemporary world?

Conclusion and Findings
Different aspects of the recent interactions between poetry and philosophy have been mostly ignored by Iranian critics and intellectuals. It should, however, be noted that such interactions do not mean that poems are replete with philosophical content or philosophical pieces are structured as poetry. It rather includes much deeper and more challenging discussions which result in redefining poetry.
While most research on poetry in Iran approaches the relationship between poetry and philosophy by relying on a traditional viewpoint, it should be noted that both the definition of poetry and the viewpoint toward philosophy have dramatically changed in the contemporary world. Inclusion of contemporary thought in research on poetry and philosophy, therefore, becomes an important step in understanding the status of poetry and its function in the contemporary world. Today, philosophers challenge Plato’s utopia and indicate that a significant part of Plato’s discussion against poetry, poets, their exile, and the lack of urgency for existence of poetry have been mostly political. Indeed, the polyphonic nature of poetry and its being uncontrollable (like philosophy or math) in a systematic space like a utopia have not been deemed proper and have, hence, resulted in Plato’s defying and excluding poetry.  Poetry is now a medium which redefines truth and returns it to the reader as a deeper entity. In terms of both the aesthetic structure and content, poetry is intertwined with the Anthropocene world and records the slightest intellectual, philosophical, cultural, or even scientific changes, moving hand in hand, and even faster than, human intellect.
 
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Article Type: Qualitative Research | Subject: Philosophy and Literature
Received: 2023/08/26 | Accepted: 2024/01/17 | Published: 2024/01/30

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