Faculty Books
 
Doing What Comes Naturally : Change, Rhetoric, and the Practice of Theory in Literary and Legal Studies

Title

Doing What Comes Naturally : Change, Rhetoric, and the Practice of Theory in Literary and Legal Studies

Files

Excerpt

In literary theory, the philosophy of law, and the sociology of knowledge, no issue has been more central to current debate than the status of our interpretations. Do they rest on a ground of rationality or are they subjective impositions of a merely personal point of view? In Doing What Comes Naturally, Stanley Fish refuses the dilemma posed by this question and argues that while we can never separate our judgments from the contexts in which they are made, those judgments are nevertheless authoritative and even, in the only way that matters, objective. He thus rejects both the demand for an ahistorical foundation, and the conclusion that in the absence of such a foundation we reside in an indeterminate world. In a succession of provocative and wide-ranging chapters, Fish explores the implications of his position for our understanding of legal, literary, and psychoanalytic interpretation, the nature of professional and institutional culture, and the place of reason in a world that is rhetorical through and through.

Description

x, 613 pages ; 24cm

ISBN

9780822308591

Publication Date

1989

Publisher

Duke Univ. Press

City

Durham, NC

Keywords

Interpretation, Literature, History and criticism, Law, Rhetoric, Semantics (Law)

Disciplines

American Literature | Law

Comments

Includes bibliographical references (page 555=593) and index