Real Authors and Fictional Agents (Fictional Narrators, Fictional Authors)

Alberto Voltolini

Abstract


In this paper, I will claim that a plausible account of fictional narration must involve a conceptual distinction among the three following figures: real authors, fictional narrators, fictional authors. Real authors may coincide, albeit rarely, either with fictional narrators or with fictional authors. A fictional narrator, however, can never coincide with a fictional author, for either figure is the ‘fictional agent, the contextual factor that contributes to yielding a semantic (truthconditional) content to the fiction-involving sentences that, in their fictional use, either figure narrates. Because of this, however, we need to distinguish between a fictional narrator and a fictional author for reasons that only partially coincide with those that Currie (1990) advocates. We need a fictional author precisely for the very same semantic reasons for which we need a fictional narrator; that is to say, as I hinted at before, in order to account for the fictional truth conditions and fictional truth values that fiction-involving sentences have in their fictional use. We indeed need either a fictional narrator or a fictional author in order to have an ‘agent’ of the relevant fictional context that enables a fiction-involving sentence, in its fictional use, to fictionally say something, i.e., to have a fictional semantic (truthconditional) content, hence to have also a fictional truth value. Yet we do not need a fictional author for ‘epistemic reasons, which have to do with reliability in narration; pace Currie (1990), just like the fictional narrator, that author must not be omniscient.


Keywords


Real Author; Fictional Narrator; Fictional Author; Fictional Agent; Fictional Use; Relevant Context of Interpretation

Full Text:

PDF (Italiano)

References


Boyd, Brian, “Does Austen Need Narrators? Does Anyone?”, New Literary History 48 (2017): 285–308.

Currie, Gregory, The Nature of Fiction, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1990.

Currie, Gregory, Image and Mind, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1995.

Currie, Gregory, Narrative and Narrators. A Philosophy of Stories, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2010.

Kania, Andrew, “Against the Ubiquity of Fictional Narrators”. The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 63 (2005): 47-54.

Kaplan, David, “Demonstratives”, Eds. Joseph Almog et al., Themes from Kaplan, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 1989: 481-563.

Lamarque, Peter, and Olsen, Stein H., Truth, Fiction, and Literature, Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1994.

Predelli, Stefano, “I am not here now”, Analysis 58 (1998): 107-155.

Predelli, Stefano, “Names and Character”, Philosophical Studies 103 (2001): 145–163.

Predelli, Stefano,Contexts, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2005.

Predelli, Stefano,Proper Names: A Millian Account, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2017.

Voltolini, Alberto, “Fiction as a Base of Interpretation Contexts”, Synthese 153 (2006a): 23-47.

Voltolini, Alberto, How Ficta Follow Fiction, Dordrecht, Springer, 2006b.

Voltolini, Alberto, “The Nature of Fiction/al Utterances”, Kairos 17 (2016): 28-55.




DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13125/2039-6597/3682

NBN: http://nbn.depositolegale.it/urn%3Anbn%3Ait%3Aunica-25601

Article Metrics

Metrics Loading ...

Metrics powered by PLOS ALM


Between Journal is published by the University of Cagliari - Maintenance for this OJS installation is provided by UniCA  Open Journals, hosted by Sistema Bibliotecario di Ateneo.

Between Journal is published with the funding of the Bank of Sardinia Foundation.

ISSN 2039-6597

CC-By lockssDOAJ seal SPARC Europe