This article explores Arendt's approach to narrative in theory as well as practice. The first part looks at Arendt's use of philosophical sources from the tradition—Aristotle, Augustine and Hegel—with an eye to how her appropriation of these figures differs from that of contemporary philosophers of narrative. Three of Arendt's typically bold and rich claims about narrative action emerge as important: the notion of action as revealing an agent's own daimõn; the condition that such action be revealable within a world or shared public space which has resilience yet vulnerability; and the potential for agents revealed within such a world to discover some form of narrative rebirth in their efforts at storytelling. The second section examines the extent to which Arendt herself allowed those claims to be tested and thought through in her own attempts (in Men in Dark Times, Rahel Varnhagen and elsewhere) at constructing biographical narrative


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pp. 115-130
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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