Narrative companionship: philosophy, gender stereotypes, and young adult literature

Hdl Handle:
http://hdl.handle.net/10756/604042
Title:
Narrative companionship: philosophy, gender stereotypes, and young adult literature
Authors:
Van Dyk, Tricia Kay
Abstract:
This dissertation contends that North American culture is in the grip of a reductionism that neglects plurality while seeking after pseudo-universality and pseudoindividuality, exemplified by the apparently contradictory tendencies to take as normative what can be generalized and to deny universally applicable normativity. I pay special attention to gender stereotypes, in which the particular (individual) becomes irrelevant, ignored, or perceived as a threat unless it can be treated as part of the general (stereotype). I argue that philosophical fiction—and, in particular, young adult fiction— contributes to a principled plurality in both lived and academic philosophy. It does so through its imaginative power to enlarge perspectives, criticize from the margins, and galvanize readers to engage with injustice. I focus on young adult fiction because of its wide reach, relevance for ethical formation, and exceptional tendency to question stereotypical understandings of human existence. After explicating the distinction between lived and academic philosophy and situating my project in the larger conversation about fiction and philosophy, I argue for the ethical significance of philosophical interaction with story. In conversation with Martha C. Nussbaum and Hannah Arendt, I draw together three themes—the integrality of form and content, the ability of storytelling to act as critical thinking in context, and the key role of particularity in the context of plurality—in order to emphasize the need to approach fiction in its intrinsic plurality without losing the possibility of shared criteria. A causal model is insufficient in this regard. Drawing on Lambert Zuidervaart’s conception of imaginative disclosure, I show that art both suggests and requires interpretation and that fiction’s ethical contribution to philosophy needs to be understood as thoroughly hermeneutical. I settle on “narrative companionship,” a variation of Wayne C. Booth’s metaphor of stories as friends, as a helpful noncausal metaphor for interaction with fiction. Then I seek to demonstrate the fruitfulness of this metaphor, in contrast to academic philosophy’s traditional approaches to fiction as either a tool or an example, by commenting on several stories that have informed my own lived philosophy.
Advisors:
Zuidervaart, Lambert; Musschenga, A. W.
Affiliation:
Institute for Christian Studies
Citation:
Van Dyke, Tricia Kay. Narrative companionship: philosophy, gender stereotypes, and young adult literature. Toronto: Institute for Christian Studies, 2016
Publisher:
Institute for Christian Studies
Issue Date:
Mar-2016
URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10756/604042
Additional Links:
http://hdl.handle.net/1871/54141
Type:
Thesis
Language:
en
Keywords:
Moral philosophy; Gender stereotypes; Young adult literature; Plurality; Philosophical fiction; Form and content; Nussbaum, Martha Craven, 1947-; Arendt, Hannah, 1906-1975; Zuidervaart, Lambert
Rights:
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/
Rights holder:
This Work has been made available by the authority of the copyright owner solely for the purpose of private study and research and may not be copied or reproduced except as permitted by the copyright laws of Canada without the written authority from the copyright owner.
Degree Title:
Conjoint Ph.D. by the Institute for Christian Studies, Toronto and the VU University Amsterdam
Appears in Collections:
Doctoral Theses

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.advisorZuidervaart, Lamberten
dc.contributor.advisorMusschenga, A. W.en
dc.contributor.authorVan Dyk, Tricia Kayen
dc.date.accessioned2016-03-30T14:56:05Zen
dc.date.available2016-03-30T14:56:05Zen
dc.date.issued2016-03en
dc.identifier.citationVan Dyke, Tricia Kay. Narrative companionship: philosophy, gender stereotypes, and young adult literature. Toronto: Institute for Christian Studies, 2016en
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10756/604042en
dc.description.abstractThis dissertation contends that North American culture is in the grip of a reductionism that neglects plurality while seeking after pseudo-universality and pseudoindividuality, exemplified by the apparently contradictory tendencies to take as normative what can be generalized and to deny universally applicable normativity. I pay special attention to gender stereotypes, in which the particular (individual) becomes irrelevant, ignored, or perceived as a threat unless it can be treated as part of the general (stereotype). I argue that philosophical fiction—and, in particular, young adult fiction— contributes to a principled plurality in both lived and academic philosophy. It does so through its imaginative power to enlarge perspectives, criticize from the margins, and galvanize readers to engage with injustice. I focus on young adult fiction because of its wide reach, relevance for ethical formation, and exceptional tendency to question stereotypical understandings of human existence. After explicating the distinction between lived and academic philosophy and situating my project in the larger conversation about fiction and philosophy, I argue for the ethical significance of philosophical interaction with story. In conversation with Martha C. Nussbaum and Hannah Arendt, I draw together three themes—the integrality of form and content, the ability of storytelling to act as critical thinking in context, and the key role of particularity in the context of plurality—in order to emphasize the need to approach fiction in its intrinsic plurality without losing the possibility of shared criteria. A causal model is insufficient in this regard. Drawing on Lambert Zuidervaart’s conception of imaginative disclosure, I show that art both suggests and requires interpretation and that fiction’s ethical contribution to philosophy needs to be understood as thoroughly hermeneutical. I settle on “narrative companionship,” a variation of Wayne C. Booth’s metaphor of stories as friends, as a helpful noncausal metaphor for interaction with fiction. Then I seek to demonstrate the fruitfulness of this metaphor, in contrast to academic philosophy’s traditional approaches to fiction as either a tool or an example, by commenting on several stories that have informed my own lived philosophy.en
dc.description.tableofcontentsAbstract -- Acknowledgments -- Introduction of the problem -- Situation of the project -- Fiction as philosophy -- Hermeneutical situation -- Narrative friendship -- Philosophical stories -- Conclusion -- Samenvattingen
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/pdfen
dc.language.isoenen
dc.publisherInstitute for Christian Studiesen
dc.relation.urlhttp://hdl.handle.net/1871/54141en
dc.rightsAttribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.en
dc.rights.urihttp://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/en
dc.subjectMoral philosophyen
dc.subjectGender stereotypesen
dc.subjectYoung adult literatureen
dc.subjectPluralityen
dc.subjectPhilosophical fictionen
dc.subjectForm and contenten
dc.subjectNussbaum, Martha Craven, 1947-en
dc.subjectArendt, Hannah, 1906-1975en
dc.subjectZuidervaart, Lamberten
dc.subject.lcshEthicsen
dc.subject.lcshStereotypes (Social psychology)en
dc.subject.lcshExperienceen
dc.subject.lcshForm (Philosophy)en
dc.subject.lcshYoung adult literatureen
dc.subject.lcshCultural pluralism in literatureen
dc.subject.lcshPluralismen
dc.subject.lcshLiterature--Philosophyen
dc.subject.lcshFiction--Philosophyen
dc.titleNarrative companionship: philosophy, gender stereotypes, and young adult literatureen
dc.typeThesisen
dc.contributor.departmentInstitute for Christian Studiesen
dc.type.degreetitleConjoint Ph.D. by the Institute for Christian Studies, Toronto and the VU University Amsterdamen
dc.rights.holderThis Work has been made available by the authority of the copyright owner solely for the purpose of private study and research and may not be copied or reproduced except as permitted by the copyright laws of Canada without the written authority from the copyright owner.en
This item is licensed under a Creative Commons License
Creative Commons
All Items in ICSIR are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.