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N o t e s introduction: the three regimes of the novel Epigraph: Mullan, How Novels Work, 9. 1. As You Like It III, 3; Fuentes, “In Praise of the Novel,” 614. 2. Blumenberg, “Concept of Reality,” 29. 3. Frege, “On Sinn and Bedeutung,” 57; I have replaced Sinn and Bedeutung, left untranslated for editorial reasons, with the customary “sense” and “reference.” (Bedeutung is occasionally rendered by “denotation” or “nominatum.”) 4. Pavel, Fictional Worlds, provides a capacious synthesis of theories of fictionality; he discusses early “segregationist” theories, which maintained a sharp line between fiction and factual discourse, on 11–17. Since the restrained historical definition of fiction offered in the present study has little common ground with the still-growing field of fictionality studies, for the most part I will not even attempt to canvas research on the philosophy of possible worlds, narratological approaches to the fiction-history distinction, and so on. 5. On Greek attitudes regarding the reality of gods and mythological heroes, see Veyne, Did the Greeks Believe; a major strand of thought held historical truth to be a kind of vulgate, consecrated by tradition. 6. Searle, Expression and Meaning, 72. (Searle includes maxims and the like as examples of nonfictional commitments.) Others have pushed in this direction; for a sample and critique, see Pavel, Fictional Worlds, 18–25. 7. De Man continues: “in the Iliad, when we first encounter Helen, it is as the emblem of the narrator weaving the actual war into the tapestry of a fictional object. . . . The selfre flecting mirror-effect by means of which a work of fiction asserts, by its very existence, its separation from empirical reality . . . characterizes the work of literature in its essence” (Blindness and Insight, 170). That Greek readers of Homer—at least by the time of Aristotle, to whom I will return in a moment—felt it to be a work of poetry as opposed to history seems to me indisputable; I doubt very much that such a status was predicated on a concept of the “empirical,” or an experience of the “essence” of literature. 8. “But are we quite sure we know what ‘literature’ means?” asks Roberto Calasso. “When we pronounce the word today, we are immediately aware that it is immeasurably distant from anything an eighteenth-century writer might have meant by it, while at the beginning of the nineteenth century it was already taking on connotations we quickly 208 notes to pages 3–8 recognize” (Literature and the Gods, 170). Literature’s growth as a category has been analyzed by Caron, “Belles lettres.” 9. To my knowledge the lexical drift from “fiction” as synonymous with (usually devalued ) poetic fancy to designating narrative literature as such has not been precisely traced. The titles of works like Staël’s Essai sur les fictions (1795) and Dunlop’s The History of Fiction (1814) at least suggest that by the turn of the nineteenth century “fiction” as an umbrella term for the novel exists in both French and English. For a brief look at the word’s English history, see Williams, Keywords, 134–35. 10. These scholars are Davis, Factual Fictions; Foley, Telling the Truth; and Gallagher, Nobody’s Story and “Rise of Fictionality.” Despite the sometimes stark disagreements that I develop below, my debt to these scholars, especially to Foley and Gallagher, is deep: they are the first to view “fiction” as a more problematic and interesting term than “the novel,” and this book would not exist without their work. 11. Walton, Mimesis as Make-Believe. For an additional philosophical-anthropological approach, see Schaeffer, Pourquoi la fiction? The argument from evolutionary biology is made in, e.g., Boyd, Origin of Stories. 12. As do Chevrolet, Idée de fable and Duprat, Vraisemblances. Richly detailed though they are, both studies take “fiction” as a historically unproblematic term. 13. See Blumenberg, Legitimacy. Blumenberg was countering the argument that the modern world is simply a secularized iteration of an earlier Christian world; it was, he held, legitimately new. 14. Poetics 9; in Russell and Winterbottom, eds., Ancient Literary Criticism, 102. (Further quotes in the following discussion are found here and on page 103.) 15. Wood, How Fiction Works, 238. Aristotelian poetry is thus understood as a hypothetical but logically coherent reality, as distinct from the purely fabulous and the historical: “Aristotle invoked, or invented, the concept of probability, in order to locate the reality of drama both beyond mere fiction and factual reality” (Pfeiffer...


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