Chapter

Selfhood and Narrative

Anthony Rudd

in Self, Value, and Narrative

Published in print October 2012 | ISBN: 9780199660049
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191744976 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199660049.003.0008
Selfhood and Narrative

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This chapter reviews controversies about the modern narrative theory of personal identity (MacIntyre, Taylor, Ricoeur, etc.) while setting aside as far as possible the ethical dimension. It argues that: narrative just is the form in which we make actions (as distinct from mere behaviours) intelligible; that we live and act on the basis of a largely implicit narrative sense of ourselves; that our lives themselves have a narrative or proto-narrative structure which makes it possible for the stories we tell to be true of those lives; and that, although the narratives we live are constantly developing works in progress, there is an important sense in which agents do, and have to, understand their whole lives (not just particular episodes) in narrative terms. In the course of the discussion I consider and respond to a number of the recent critics of narrative theory (including Lamarque, Strawson, Lippitt, and Zahavi).

Keywords: action; Lamarque; Lippitt; MacIntyre; narrative; personal identity; Ricoeur; Strawson; Taylor; Zahavi

Chapter.  15576 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

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