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This edited volume explores the relationship between short stories and political philosophy, broadly understood. More specifically, each chapter analyzes a single, brief fictional narrative to address the innovative ways that short stories grapple with the same complex political and moral questions studied in political theory and ethics. We have selected short stories as our medium because they offer specific pedagogical…

Anti-utopian fiction has recently gripped the American imagination. Books such as The Hunger Games and the Divergent series have sold millions of copies and the movies based on these books have also been extremely popular. In January and February of 2017, Amazon briefly ran out of copies of 1984 and the sales of A Brave New World, The Handmaid’s Tale,…

Human Nature and Politics in Utopian and Anti-Utopian Fiction. Nivedita Bagchi. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2018.
 
In Human Nature and Politics in Utopian and Anti-Utopian Fiction, Nivedita Bagchi examines the philosophical underpinnings of four well-known works of utopian/dystopian fiction: Thomas More’s Utopia, Edward Bellamy’s Looking Backward, Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, and George Orwell’s 1984. Bagchi’s expressed purpose in this book…

Storytelling is universal; a constitutive, definitive part of human nature.[1] We imagine our earliest ancestors sitting around the fire telling tales of heroic adventures and otherworldly interventions. Examples of our earliest extant written texts are epic poems likely derived from oral storytelling. We become fascinated by stories that happened long ago or far away as children. Until the development of…

Flattering the Demos: Fiction and Democratic Education.  Marlene K. Sokolon and Travis D. Smith, eds. Lanham: Lexington Books, 2018.
 
This edited compilation by Marlene Sokolon and Travis Smith makes important contributions to the field of political science teaching. Concerned to understand better how the study of fiction through multiple genres can inform and shape democratic education, the editors begin these investigations…

“Where there is no vision, the people perish” (Proverbs 29:18).
 
Human nature encompasses both the rational and the emotional. Modern political science has segregated these two concepts while promoting the supremacy of rationalism. This manner of study reduces the multidimensionality of humans which further reduces how we view and address problems through political means. To the attentive reader this book will…

And now let me take up some of the principles I have discerned, or believe to have discerned [in Heilman's then new book on Othello, entitled Magic in the Web,] and which I admire both for clarity of conception and force of execution.
First of all, the principle of exhaustion of the source. The interpretation of a literary work by a…