Rowman & Littlefield Publishers / Rowman & Littlefield International
Trim: 6 x 9
978-1-78660-734-8 • Hardback • August 2019 • $133.00 • (£102.00)
978-1-78660-735-5 • Paperback • August 2019 • $45.00 • (£35.00)
978-1-78660-736-2 • eBook • August 2019 • $42.50 • (£33.00)
Peter Kivy was Professor of Philosophy Emeritus at Rutgers University. His many published works include De Gustibus: Arguing About Taste and Why We Do It (2015), Music Alone: Philosophical Reflections on the Purely Musical Experience (2009), The Blackwell Guide to Aesthetics (2004) and Antithetical Arts: On the Ancient Quarrel Between Literature and Music (2009). Several of his books have been translated into Chinese, Italian, Korean, Portuguese, and Spanish. He was a former Guggenheim Fellow and a past President of the American Society for Aesthetics.
Aaron Meskin is the Head of the Department of Philosophy at the University of Georgia.
Preface / 1. The Actual, the Possible and the Probable: Problems in Poetics IX / 2. Criticism, Communication, Conversation, Craft / 3. Facts From Fictions / 4. Knowledge and Novel Knowledge / 5. Swept Up in the Story / 6. Tell Me a Story! / 7. The Dancer and the Dance: On Reading as Performance / 8. Joking Morality / Bibliography / Index
Kivy (1934–2017) was well known as one of the US's leading writers on aesthetics, especially the philosophy of music and the philosophy of art. But he had other scholarly interests, and this posthumous collection brings together eight previously unpublished essays concerned with a number of different topics in the philosophy of literature, broadly conceived. Together, the essays testify to Kivy’s meticulous approach to aesthetics and philosophy, his subtlety, and his sense of style. Among the topics discussed: Aristotle’s Poetics, the idea of reading as a kind of performance, the allure of storytelling and the deep human need for stories, and the literary aspect of jokes. This last of these is especially intriguing: Is it always wrong to tell an “immoral” joke? Is it always wrong to laugh at such a joke? In discussing these things, Kivy begins with experience and then skillfully draws out the philosophical contours of his subject. His work is refined but down-to-earth. Kivy was an urbane and sophisticated writer of the old school, and he will continue to be missed.
Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students, researchers, faculty.
— Choice Reviews
We want to be told a story almost as much as we want to breathe. But why? The answer is classic Kivy, a healthy serving of common sense spiced with eloquence, wit, and an unforgettable personal voice. A book to take to heart.
— Dominic McIver Lopes, Professor of Philosophy, University of British Columbia