The Enigma of Good and Evil: The Moral Sentiment in Literature (Analecta Husserliana)
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Striking toward peace and harmony the human being is ceasely torn apart in personal, social, national life by wars, feuds, inequities and intimate personal conflicts for which there seems to be no respite. Does the human condition in interaction with others imply a constant adversity? Or, is this conflict owing to an interior or external factor of evil governing our attitudes and conduct toward the other person? To what criteria should I refer for appreciation, judgment, direction concerning my attitudes and my actions as they bear on the well-being of others?
At the roots of these questions lies human experience which ought to be appropriately clarified before entering into speculative abstractions of the ethical theories and precepts. Literature, which in its very gist, dwells upon disentangling in multiple perspective the peripeteia of our life-experience offers us a unique field of source-material for moral and ethical investigations.
Literature brings preeminently to light the Moral Sentiment which pervades our life with others -- our existence tout court. Being modulated through the course of our experiences the Moral Sentiment sustains the very sense of literature and of personal human life (Tymieniecka).
blank, love eventually arises as a feeling-phenomena released from presentational meaning. Presentationality, aﬀective ﬀ meaning, ‘life’ are all cancelled out beforehand. At the end of the novel, Mrs. Bascomb does not seem to be alive in a presentational sense. We learn that she has ‘‘been so little conscious of herself ’ during the period after Dids’ birth ‘‘that she seemed scarcely to have lived ... at all’’ (HSW, W 249). Mrs. Bascomb has stopped living. The only one who still moves towards
Derrida, Sur Parole, Instantanes Philosophiques (Paris: E`ditions de l’aube, 1999), p. 84. 18 Carlos Fuentes, IInstinto de Ines (Mexico: Alfaguara, 2000), p. 50. REFERENCES Barry, Kevin. L anguage, Music and the Sign: A Study of Aesthetics, Poetics and the Poetic Practice from Collins to Coleridge. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1987. Brannigan. John, Ruth Robbins and Julian Wolfreys, Applying to Derrida. London: MacMillan Press, 1996. Cohn, Dorrit. T he Distinction of Fiction. Baltimore, The Johns
reference point. The only real common element would be the dialectics between vices and virtues. T he N Notion of Good A human being is made of qualities we ﬁnally are able to discover or reveal (AD: 247). According to Proust, our virtues are progressively associated with virtuous actions accomplished in accordance with our duties. When we are deciding whether or not to realize actions that would not be directly connected with given virtues, we are in a state of psychological weakness. We are
country. The public guardians of morality, justice, and power all are whitened sepulchers, privately depraved or criminal. Ford’s family, Central City – each is a stinking prison’’ (350). Central City is morally eviscerated, a fallen world, and Lou a potent reﬂection of its corrupt core. A spectacular representation of this moral cataclysm, Lou Ford’s astonishing ﬁrst-person narrative both proposes and, at the same time, ironically rejects all Grand Narratives about evil in the human character.
‘‘Golden Age’’ (in which the world is totally reconciled). Remembering makes us feel how our representations and images are far from reality itself, although reality is always changing (AOJ, I: 314). The present happiness linked to a person we loved in the past but that we no longer love is not the same happiness that made us sad in the past. The only reliable judge is our self that prevails when such unhappiness was apprehended. Such a self no longer exists. If it could be reborn, it would only