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Narrative HumanismKindness and Complexity in Fiction and Film$
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Wyatt Moss-Wellington

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781474454315

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474454315.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 03 July 2022

Reading the Human Drama in Film and Fiction

Reading the Human Drama in Film and Fiction

(p.13) Chapter 1 Reading the Human Drama in Film and Fiction
Narrative Humanism

Wyatt Moss-Wellington

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter goes into greater detail regarding the history of humanist thought and the way a narrative-based humanism might be exhumed from humanism’s philosophical lineage. It looks at the differences between Renaissance, canonical, and contemporary secular humanisms and the set of values that are conjured when a narrative is described as “humanistic.” It makes a case for humanism as both a style of storytelling, and a reading method, and thus establishes a “humanist hermeneutics” that will be carried through the remainder of the book. In so doing, this chapter sets up some core values of narrative humanism: it describes the difference between narrative and character complexity, the use of social science as a hermeneutic tool, the value of incomplete striving for understanding rather than grand theories that totalise people’s worlds, and finally describes some of the alternatives to humanism before concluding.

Keywords:   Humanism, hermeneutics, complexity, listening, vulnerability, antihumanism, the Other, character, cognitivism, anthropology

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