Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Literature and Moral Feeling
  • Export citation
  • Recommend to librarian
  • Buy the print book

Book description

An influential body of recent work on moral psychology has stressed the interconnections among ethics, narrative, and empathy. Yet as Patrick Colm Hogan argues, this work is so vague in its use of the term 'narrative' as to be almost substanceless, and this vagueness is in large part due to the neglect of literary study. Extending his previous work on universal story structures, Hogan argues that we can transform ill-defined intuitions about narrative and ethics into explicit and systematic accounts of the deep connections between moral attitudes and narratives. These connections are, in turn, inseparable from empathy, a concept that Hogan proceeds to clarify and defend against a number of widely read critiques. In the course of the book, Hogan develops and illustrates his arguments through analyses of global narratives, constructing illuminating ethical interpretations of literary works ranging from Shakespeare to Chinese drama and the Bhagavad Gita.

Reviews

‘The philosophy of ethics has been central to understanding human interaction since ancient times. Now Patrick Colm Hogan, the most important researcher in the twenty-first century on the relationships between psychology and worldwide literature, has written a fascinating update. He says that ethical actions typically ‘oppose egocentric self-interest' and are often based in empathy. With this beginning, and explorations that range from Shakespeare's plays to Chinese poetry and a German movie, he deepens our understanding of how we might act for the best towards others.'

Keith Oatley - author of Our Minds, Our Selves: A Brief History of Psychology

‘The morality tale in literature, and the thought experiment in moral philosophy, remind us that ethics and narrative are deeply entwined. In a superb example of consilience, breaching arbitrary disciplinary boundaries, Patrick Colm Hogan provides important new insights into how members of our species make sense of our feelings and obligations to one another.'

Steven Pinker - Johnstone Professor of Psychology, Harvard University, and the author of How the Mind Works and Rationality

Refine List

Actions for selected content:

Select all | Deselect all
  • View selected items
  • Export citations
  • Download PDF (zip)
  • Save to Kindle
  • Save to Dropbox
  • Save to Google Drive

Save Search

You can save your searches here and later view and run them again in "My saved searches".

Please provide a title, maximum of 40 characters.
×

Contents

  • Chapter 1 - Defining Ethics
    pp 9-39

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Book summary page views

Total views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between #date#. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed.