However if we look to the basic premise underlying Enlightenment feminism – that women, not having been denied powers of reason, must have the moral status appropriate to ‘rational beings’, formed in the image of a rational God – we must reach a different conclusion. At least two of the three of Austen’s heroines examined were apparently presumed by the men in their lives as capable not of forging their own moral code, but only of regurgitating that of their lovers.
What if the mistakes we make in the here and now were never going to be made ‘right’ on some dim, distant redemption day?
In Scarlett Thomas’ new novel, Our Tragic Universe, heroine Meg concludes that self-help books succeed by first making us feel bad about ourselves and then giving us the perfect fix. It’s rather like Humpty Dumpty being pushed off a wall and broken so someone can make a fast buck putting him back together again. According to Meg, the arenas in which we need … Read More “Our Tragic Universe” & the Fiction of Perfection – The Self-Help Industry Exposed
Art commands special status and support from states, corporations, and the public at large. Art is not just a matter of profits – indeed some art is extremely unprofitable. Art is of enduring cultural esteem and concern. Yet given its importance, surprisingly there is no accepted definition of art. Most philosophers believe that simply being entertaining is not enough. Similarly defining ‘art’ in terms … Read More When is Fiction Art and Why Does it Matter?