Mr. Swan’s distinction between the “order” in our everyday perception and the “disorder” aroused by art is compatible with my own statements. And I agree with him also in believing that literature provides no special sort of knowledge. Our disagreement, as I see it, is essentially over the question of what happens to our emotional response when we move from an actual event (where a man is threatening the child with a gun, to use our common example) to the artistic treatment of this event. Mr. Swan argues that there is no essential change: if we hate the man in reality, we will hate him in the novel or the play. And he further argues that the absence of such an emotion, which I find in the literary experience...
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