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252Philosophy and Literature convention and talent but also call for courage to engage in an interpretation of experience that can be a source of delight. Prado's illuminating and provocative analysis of fictional discourse reinforces the conclusion that the notions of knowledge and truth also have a normative dimension; they can tell us not only what is the case but also "how one ought to behave." Interestingly enough, this last phrase is neutral with regard to the distinction which, following Sparshott, Prado is prepared to accept, namely, the distinction between the ethical and the moral. "The ethical has to do with how one should live in order to flourish and to behave in the best possible ways. Against this, the moral has to do with living according to the code of one's community and culture" (p. 67). But what if the two objectives appear to be in conflict ? Prado seems to follow Rorty in suggesting that in cases like this we just follow "the norms of the day." But this is unnecessarily restrictive. An individual may sometimes see beyond the norms of his day, and he may express what he sees in fictional language. Prado reminds us that creative intelligence is intrinsically evaluative and that we interpret as we read. It is no less true, I would add, that we do so as we write. Writing, reading, and understanding fiction are important because they have to do "with value and the creation of value" (p. 146). If productiveness is a feature of all narratives, a fictional product may sometimes put the norms of our culture in a new perspective. Rice UniversityKonstantin Kolenda Arnold and God, by Ruth apRoberts; xi & 299 pp. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1983, $26.50. Matthew Arnold is best known for his verse, his literary criticism, and his social commentary; however, he was also a prolific writer on religion and the Bible, subjects that were far more integral to all of his work than most of his twentieth-century evaluators have recognized. The greatest challenge of Arnold's career, says Ruth apRoberts in her articulate and scholarly Arnold and God, was the religious question, and the greatest textual challenge was the Bible, leading to his most systematic literary criticism. For well over a decade of his life, Arnold devoted his attention to philosophy of religion and biblical interpretation, resulting in St. Paul and Protestantism, Literature and Dogma, God and the Bible, Last Essays on Church and Religion, and a remarkably well-edited version of Isaiah in Jerusalem. While some Arnold scholars have ignored or dismissed this phase of his work as a wilderness in his literary career, apRoberts is among a small but growing number who see other- Reviews253 wise. Arnold and God is the most comprehensive and convincing study to date on the centrality ofhis religious ideas and the importance of his biblical criticism for fruitful interpretations of literary texts both secular and religious. Arnold and God begins with an account of Arnold's early recognition of his poetic-religious vocation and a discussion of his intellectual inheritance through his father and friends in the Broad Church movement. Rooted in his study of the Bildung doctrine developed by Herder, Wilhelm von Humboldt, and Goethe, Arnold's concept of development or process is applied to both civilizations and individuals as the basis for all of his cultural and literary criticism, including his study of religion and the Bible. Professor apRoberts makes extensive use of Arnold's Notebooks, which he kept from 1852 until his death and which, with religious and biblical texts cited in greatest frequency, constitute an "Arnoldian's breviary" (p. 1 10). His literature-and-religion linkage is evident in his Essays in Criticism, and prevailing biblical images in Culture andAnarchy make it a prelude to his religious works which, says apRoberts, constitute a "kind of Victorian summa" (p. 215). After a superb central chapter on the nature and importance of metaphor in religious discourse, an importance recognized by Arnold and masterfully applied in his defense of the Bible against the literalists and in his translation of Isaiah, apRoberts rightly concludes that "the main line of scholarly biblical criticism today appears to be Arnoldian...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1086-329X
Print ISSN
0190-0013
Pages
pp. 252-253
Launched on MUSE
2011-10-05
Open Access
No
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