Angela Carter and Western Philosophy by Heidi Yeandle

By Heidi Yeandle

This e-book reveals Carter’s deconstruction of the male-dominated self-discipline of Western idea. Revealing the vast philosophical study that underpins Carter’s intertextual paintings, this booklet bargains new readings of her fiction on the subject of various philosophical texts and concepts. through re-examining Carter’s writing near to the archived selection of her notes that has lately develop into on hand on the British Library, Angela Carter and Western Philosophy places ahead new interpretations of Carter’s writing practices. With chapters interpreting her allusions to Plato, Hobbes and Rousseau, Descartes, Locke and Hume, Wittgenstein and Ryle, in addition to Kant and Sade, this booklet illuminates Carter’s engagement with assorted components of Western proposal, and discusses how this shapes her portrayal of fact, id, civilisation, and morality. Angela Carter and Western Philosophy may be of curiosity to researchers, teachers, and scholars engaged on modern women’s writing, philosophy and literature, and intertextual literary practices.

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Sample text

But Plato’s Simile specifies that the philosopher is compelled to return to the underground den and rule: because the philosopher has ‘seen the beautiful and just and good in their truth’, Plato believes that once they re-adjust to the visible realm of the cave, they ‘will see ten thousand times better than those in the den’ (354), and can therefore govern effectively. 34 H. YEANDLE Plato’s hierarchical depiction of reality permeates throughout Carter’s body of work, but is particularly central to New Eve, and, as I have already discussed, Doctor Hoffman.

In interview with Cagney Watts, Carter explains that ‘Tristessa is a male projection of femininity, that’s why she’s doomed, her life is completely based on false premises. This character only had the notion of his idea of a woman before he set out to become 38 H. YEANDLE one’ (165). The shadow or ‘projection’ is therefore man-made—an artificial construct based on male ideals, or Forms. But following Plato’s Cave trajectory, Eve(lyn) encounters Tristessa herself, moving from section D to C of the Divided Line; rather than seeing the actress as a shadow on a screen, s/he meets her face-to-face.

Original emphasis). In this sense, Carter’s work reflects Plato’s early dialogues which display Socrates’s style of interrogation, known as the Socratic method. Plato’s earlier works are ‘aporetic’ as ‘exploratory questions were raised but left hanging in the air without answers’ (Reeves vi).  Francis Reeves continues, ‘Socrates was tentative and uncertain. He raises more questions than answers. He looked at all sides of the issues and never gave a final answer’ (vi). Likewise, Carter’s ‘texts are deliberately aporetic’ (Ga ̨siorek 135) as they avoid conclusive answers, as illustrated by the conclusion of New Eve.

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