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The Company We Keep: An Ethics of Fiction Paperback – 1 Jul 1992

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Paperback: 580 pages
  • Publisher: University of California Press; Reprint edition (1 July 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0520062108
  • ISBN-13: 978-0520062108
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 3.2 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 35,760 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


"Booth is an expert rhetorician (the footnotes are little works of art). He varies his attack. He tells anecdotes, analyzes concepts, reads philosophical texts, describes the experience of certain novels, generalizes, makes lists, and syllogizes. Indeed, this collection embodies the ideal of vigorous, friendly discussion."--Thomas D'Evelyn, "Christian Science Monitor

About the Author

Wayne C. Booth (1921-2005) was George M. Pullman Distinguished Service Professor of English at the University of Chicago.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Still reading, but I think he raises interesting points.
Pullman says that all fiction teaches the world that we live by, indicating that he knows its power to persuade. Within postmodernism, the argument is often made that the reader should abuse the text, lest the text abuse them, again realising the power of word and story.
Yet, we still do not carefully consider the ethics, methods, and impact of narratives as methods of persuasion and argument, their ability to sneak another view point under the radar through the use of asthetics and emotions.

Let Booth persuade you and provoke you to thought...
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars 1 review
18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars required reading for anyone who cares about literature 24 Dec. 2004
By bookloversfriend - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
In his usual thorough, encyclopedic way, Booth discusses many of the issues concerning the effects of fiction in the real world on real people. And as usual, he bends over backward to be fair to everybody. He gives patient, exhaustive treatments of all arguments and claims, even the most idiotic, showing their inadequacies. But people who put forth idiotic arguments do not do so because they are stupid but because they are committed, and committed people do not respond to reason, however patient and thorough. Still, there is much thought-provoking material here, and the book should be read by all readers interested in the personal and social effects of literature. Booth is weakest when dealing with philosophical issues (because he is not a philosopher). His confusions about subjectivism and relativism are cases in point. For a competent discussion of these and the other ethical (i.e. value-theoretic) issues, readers would be better advised to get A Book Worth Reading. But as a compendium of arguments "clearing away the dead wood" and for his many thought-provoking discussions, Booth is impossible to beat.
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