Can liretature ''tell the truth'' better than other areas of knowledge?

In summary, the conversation is discussing the topic of whether literature can convey truth better than other areas of knowledge. The speaker is struggling with interpreting the question and finding relevant content for their essay. They provide a few potential areas of comparison - natural science, social science, and mathematics. They also mention the importance of initial research on the subject. Another person chimes in with the idea that literature is simply a recording of knowledge and its truthfulness depends on the author. The conversation also mentions the use of parable as a means of shaping attitudes and beliefs in certain cultures.
  • #1
anida
3
0
Hye everybody...
I have a problem here..actually I'm taking International Baccaulareate course and I've required to do a Theory of Knowledge essay in order for me to get my diploma...The question is :


*Can liretature ''tell the truth'' better than other areas of knowledge?*

I've problems in interpreting this questions and also to get the contents of it.The areas of knowledge that I want to compare with the literature is natural science, social science and mathematics..

Can somebody help me...please..i need to submit this 1500 words essay within two months from now..I've work hard for this topic but I can't still produce a satisfying essay...please...

Best regards...:confused:
 
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  • #2
I would advise you to do a search (keyword "knowledge") of the PF philosophy section for a lot of good discussions on the meaning of knowledge. It gets discussed quite often.

It also might be better for us to help you if you provide us some of your initial research on the subject.

But first off, as a quick response to your query. I would say that literature is nothing more than a recording of said knowledge. Its truth content is no more truthful than the author who wrote it.
 
  • #3
Depends upon the area. Ursula K. LeGuin, in a preface to her science fiction novel "The Left Hand of Darkness" wrote "It is an artist's job to say that which cannot be said in words. A novelist is an artist whose medium is words. That is, it is a novelist's job to say, in words, that which cannot be said in words! To do this, we use a technique called 'the lie'."
 
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  • #4
If your school or local library offers access to JSTOR, there is a terrific paper on this written by Thomas Merrill called http://links.jstor.org/sici?sici=0013-8304(198322)50%3A2%3C279%3AMSP%3E2.0.CO%3B2-J about the use specifically of parable as a means of informing the attitude rather than the intellect. The use of myth and folklore, and even children's tales, has a long history of shaping the belief systems, and perhaps more importantly, the ethics and ideal behavior of persons socialized into a given culture where that myth or tale originates. The article uses Paradise Lost as a point of reference, but this notion of certain literature as parabolic language can be applied generally.
 
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1. What is the definition of "truth" in literature?

In literature, truth is often seen as a subjective concept, as it is shaped by the unique perspectives and experiences of the author and reader. It can be interpreted differently by different individuals, making it difficult to define in concrete terms.

2. How does literature convey truth?

Literature conveys truth through various techniques such as symbolism, metaphor, and allegory. By using these literary devices, authors are able to express complex ideas and emotions that may not be easily expressed through other forms of knowledge.

3. Can literature provide a more nuanced understanding of truth compared to other areas of knowledge?

Yes, literature can provide a more nuanced understanding of truth as it allows for multiple perspectives to be explored and considered. It also provides a platform for marginalized voices to be heard and for alternative narratives to be shared, challenging dominant beliefs and truths.

4. Is literature a reliable source of truth?

While literature can provide valuable insights and perspectives, it is important to remember that it is a form of artistic expression, not necessarily a factual account. Therefore, it should not be relied upon as the sole source of truth, but rather as one of many sources to consider.

5. How does the cultural and historical context of literature impact its representation of truth?

The cultural and historical context of literature greatly influences the representation of truth within a text. The beliefs, values, and social norms of a particular time and place can shape the way truth is portrayed and perceived in literature, making it a reflection of its cultural and historical context.

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