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Title: The paradox of fiction: the rationality of our emotional responses to works of fiction
Authors: Mathinivedha d/o Neviliappan
Keywords: Humanities::Philosophy
Issue Date: 2023
Publisher: Nanyang Technological University
Source: Mathinivedha d/o Neviliappan (2023). The paradox of fiction: the rationality of our emotional responses to works of fiction. Final Year Project (FYP), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
Abstract: This paper seeks to explore the paradox of fiction, or more precisely, the paradox of why we are able to genuinely emotionally respond to characters, objects and situations in works of fiction. I argue that the paradox can be resolved by refining the second premise, asserting that we can have genuine, rational emotional responses to fictional characters/objects/situations even if we do not believe that they exist in real life, as long as they could potentially exist in real life or our emotional responses themselves are aligned with aesthetic conventions and conveyed appropriately. With a brief review of existing literature on this topic, I provide a justification for this refinement of the second premise by looking at our cognitive abilities of empathy and mental associations, as well as the notion of aesthetic conventions in our engagement and appreciation of works of art/fiction.
Schools: School of Humanities 
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:SoH Student Reports (FYP/IA/PA/PI)

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