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Imaginative resistance revisited

In Shaun Nichols (ed.), The Architecture of the Imagination. Oxford University Press. pp. 149-173 (2006)

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  1. The Content-Dependence of Imaginative Resistance.Hanna Kim, Markus Kneer & Michael T. Stuart - 2018 - In Florian Cova & Sébastien Réhault (eds.), Advances in Experimental Philosophy of Aesthetics. London: Bloomsbury. pp. 143-166.
    An observation of Hume’s has received a lot of attention over the last decade and a half: Although we can standardly imagine the most implausible scenarios, we encounter resistance when imagining propositions at odds with established moral (or perhaps more generally evaluative) convictions. The literature is ripe with ‘solutions’ to this so-called ‘Puzzle of Imaginative Resistance’. Few, however, question the plausibility of the empirical assumption at the heart of the puzzle. In this paper, we explore empirically whether the difficulty we (...)
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  • The Problem of Imaginative Resistance.Tamar Szabó Gendler & Shen-yi Liao - 2016 - In John Gibson & Noël Carroll (eds.), The Routledge Companion to Philosophy of Literature. Routledge. pp. 405-418.
    The problem of imaginative resistance holds interest for aestheticians, literary theorists, ethicists, philosophers of mind, and epistemologists. We present a somewhat opinionated overview of the philosophical discussion to date. We begin by introducing the phenomenon of imaginative resistance. We then review existing responses to the problem, giving special attention to recent research directions. Finally, we consider the philosophical significance that imaginative resistance has—or, at least, is alleged to have—for issues in moral psychology, theories of cognitive architecture, and modal epistemology.
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  • Imaginative Resistance, Narrative Engagement, Genre.Shen-yi Liao - 2016 - Res Philosophica 93 (2):461-482.
    Imaginative resistance refers to a phenomenon in which people resist engaging in particular prompted imaginative activities. On one influential diagnosis of imaginative resistance, the systematic difficulties are due to these particular propositions’ discordance with real-world norms. This essay argues that this influential diagnosis is too simple. While imagination is indeed by default constrained by real-world norms during narrative engagement, it can be freed with the power of genre conventions and expectations.
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  • The Ancient Quarrel Between Art and Philosophy in Contemporary Exhibitions of Visual Art.Jennifer A. McMahon - 2019 - Curator: The Museum Journal 62 (1):7-17.
    At a time when professional art criticism is on the wane, the ancient quarrel between art and philosophy demands fresh answers. Professional art criticism provided a basis upon which to distinguish apt experiences of art from the idiosyncratic. However, currently the kind of narratives from which critics once drew are underplayed or discarded in contemporary exhibition design where the visual arts are concerned. This leaves open the possibility that art operates either as mere stimulant to private reverie or, in the (...)
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  • Coping With Imaginative Resistance.Daniel Altshuler & Emar Maier - forthcoming - Journal of Semantics.
    We propose to characterize imaginative resistance as the failure or unwillingness of the reader to take a fictional description of a deviant reality at face value. The goal of the paper is to explore how readers deal with such a breakdown of the default Face Value interpretation strategy. We posit two distinct interpretative ‘coping’ strategies which help the reader engage with the resistance-inducing fiction by attributing the offending content to one of the fictional characters. We present novel empirical evidence that (...)
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  • Resisting Tiny Heroes: Kant on the Mechanism and Scope of Imaginative Resistance.Morganna Lambeth - 2022 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 80 (2):164-176.
    Traditionally, theorists suggested that imaginative resistance is limited to morally repugnant claims. More recently, theorists have argued that the phenomenon of imaginative resistance is wider in scope, extending to descriptive claims. On both sides, though, theorists have focused on cases where imaginative resistance goes right, tracking something that is wrong with the story—that it is morally repugnant, or conceptually contradictory. I use a rarely cited discussion from Kant to argue that imaginative resistance can also occur when something goes wrong with (...)
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  • A Sensibilist Explanation of Imaginative Resistance.Nils Franzén - 2021 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy (3):159-174.
    This article discusses why it is the case that we refuse to accept strange evaluative claims as being true in fictions, even though we are happy to go along with other types of absurdities in such contexts. For instance, we would refuse to accept the following statement as true, even in the con-text of a fiction: -/- (i) In killing her baby, Giselda did the right thing; after all, it was a girl. -/- This article offers a sensibilist diagnosis of (...)
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  • Imagination.Tamar Szabó Gendler - 2011 - In Edward N. Zalta (ed.), Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Center for the Study of Language and Information, Stanford University.
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  • Structures of Morality and Allegiance in the Character Arc Story.Rory Kelly & Samuel Cumming - forthcoming - British Journal of Aesthetics.
    The view that allegiance to characters is a matter of general moral assessment, as developed by Carroll and Smith, has the resources to respond to counter-examples proposed in the literature, including appeals to anti-heroes, rough heroes and other ‘reprehensible characters’ that garner our allegiance. It can even admit non-moral factors as subterranean influences on moral assessment. Nevertheless, the view requires that the characters we most favour are those with the highest moral standing, and this does not seem to be true (...)
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  • Imagining as a Guide to Possibility.Peter Kung - 2010 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 81 (3):620-663.
    I lay out the framework for my theory of sensory imagination in “Imagining as a guide to possibility.” Sensory imagining involves mental imagery , and crucially, in describing the content of imagining, I distinguish between qualitative content and assigned content. Qualitative content derives from the mental image itself; for visual imaginings, it is what is “pictured.” For example, visually imagine the Philadelphia Eagles defeating the Pittsburgh Steelers to win their first Super Bowl. You picture the greenness of the field and (...)
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  • Player Engagement with Games: Formal Reliefs and Representation Checks.Karl Egerton - 2022 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 80 (1):95-104.
    Alongside the direct parallels and contrasts between traditional narrative fiction and games, there lie certain partial analogies that provide their own insights. This article begins by examining a direct parallel between narrative fiction and games—the role of fictional reliefs and reality checks in shaping aesthetic engagement—before arguing that from this a partial analogy can be developed stemming from a feature that distinguishes most games from most traditional fictions: the presence of rules. The relation between rules and fiction in games has (...)
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  • Imagined and Delusional Pain.Jennifer Radden - 2021 - Rivista Internazionale di Filosofia e Psicologia 12 (2):151-166.
    : Extreme pain and suffering are associated with depression as well as tissue damage. The impossibility of imagining any feelings of pain and suffering intersect with two matters: the kind of imagining involved, and the nature of delusions. These two correspond to the sequence of the following discussion, in which it is contended first that feelings of pain and suffering resist being imagined in a certain, key way, and second that, given a certain analysis of delusional thought, this precludes the (...)
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  • Moral Persuasion and the Diversity of Fictions.Shen-yi Liao - 2013 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 94 (3):269-289.
    Narrative representations can change our moral actions and thoughts, for better or for worse. In this article, I develop a theory of fictions' capacity for moral education and moral corruption that is fully sensitive to the diversity of fictions. Specifically, I argue that the way a fiction influences our moral actions and thoughts importantly depends on its genre. This theory promises new insights into practical ethical debates over pornography and media violence.
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  • Perspectives in Imaginative Engagement with Fiction.Elisabeth Camp - 2017 - Philosophical Perspectives 31 (1):73-102.
    I take up three puzzles about our emotional and evaluative responses to fiction. First, how can we even have emotional responses to characters and events that we know not to exist, if emotions are as intimately connected to belief and action as they seem to be? One solution to this puzzle claims that we merely imagine having such emotional responses. But this raises the puzzle of why we would ever refuse to follow an author’s instructions to imagine such responses, since (...)
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  • Improve Your Thought Experiments Overnight with Speculative Fiction!Ross P. Cameron - 2015 - Midwest Studies in Philosophy 39 (1):29-45.
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  • Ethics and Imagination.Joy Shim & Shen-yi Liao - forthcoming - In James Harold (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Ethics and Art. Oxford University Press.
    In this chapter, we identify and present predominant debates at the intersection of ethics and imagination. We begin by examining issues on whether our imagination can be constrained by ethical considerations, such as the moral evaluation of imagination, the potential for morality’s constraining our imaginative abilities, and the possibility of moral norms’ governing our imaginings. Then, we present accounts that posit imagination’s integral role in cultivating ethical lives, both through engagements with narrative artworks and in reality. Our final topic of (...)
     
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  • Gendler on the Puzzle(s) of Imaginative Resistance.Andrea Sauchelli - 2016 - Acta Analytica 31 (1):1-9.
    Gendler reformulated the so-called imaginability puzzle in terms of authorial breakdown. The main idea behind this move was to isolate the essential features displayed by the alleged problematic cases and to specify a puzzle general enough to be applied to a variety of different types of imaginative resistance. I offer various criticisms of Gendler’s approach to imaginative resistance that also raise some more general points on the recent literature on the topic.
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  • Against Cognitivism About Supposition.Margherita Arcangeli - 2014 - Philosophia 42 (3):607-624.
    A popular view maintains that supposition is a kind of cognitive mental state, very similar to belief in essential respects. Call this view “cognitivism about supposition”. There are at least three grades of cognitivism, construing supposition as (i) a belief, (ii) belief-like imagination or (iii) a species of belief-like imagination. I shall argue against all three grades of cognitivism and claim that supposition is a sui generis form of imagination essentially dissimilar to belief. Since for good reasons (i) is not (...)
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  • The Multifaceted Role of Imagination in Science and Religion. A Critical Examination of its Epistemic, Creative and Meaning-Making Functions.Ingrid Malm Lindberg - 2021 - Dissertation, Uppsala University
    The main purpose of this dissertation is to examine critically and discuss the role of imagination in science and religion, with particular emphasis on its possible epistemic, creative, and meaning-making functions. In order to answer my research questions, I apply theories and concepts from contemporary philosophy of mind on scientific and religious practices. This framework allows me to explore the mental state of imagination, not as an isolated phenomenon but, rather, as one of many mental states that co-exist and interplay (...)
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  • Imaginative Resistance and Empathic Resistance.Thomas Szanto - 2020 - Topoi 39 (4):791-802.
    In the past few decades, a growing number of philosophers have tried to explain the phenomenon of imaginative resistance, or why readers often resist the invitation of authors to imagine morally deviant fictional scenarios. In this paper, I critically assess a recent proposal to explain IR in terms of a failure of empathy, and present a novel explanation. I do so by drawing on Peter Goldie’s narrative account of empathic perspective-taking, which curiously has so far been neglected in the IR-literature. (...)
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  • Introduction: Les vertus de l’imagination.Christine Tappolet - 2010 - Les ateliers de l'éthique/The Ethics Forum 5 (1):23-25.
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  • The Mind's Bermuda Triangle: Philosophy of Emotions and Empirical Science.Ronald de Sousa - 2010 - In Peter Goldie (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Emotion. Oxford University Press.
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  • Imagination Through Knowledge.Shannon Spaulding - 2016 - In Amy Kind & Peter Kung (eds.), Knowledge Through Imagination. Oxford University Press. pp. 207-226.
    Imagination seems to play an epistemic role in philosophical and scientific thought experiments, mindreading, and ordinary practical deliberations insofar as it generates new knowledge of contingent facts about the world. However, it also seems that imagination is limited to creative generation of ideas. Sometimes we imagine fanciful ideas that depart freely from reality. The conjunction of these claims is what I call the puzzle of knowledge through imagination. This chapter aims to resolve this puzzle. I argue that imagination has an (...)
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  • The Cognitive Architecture of Imaginative Resistance.Kengo Miyazono & Shen-yi Liao - 2016 - In Amy Kind (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Imagination. pp. 233-246.
    Where is imagination in imaginative resistance? We seek to answer this question by connecting two ongoing lines of inquiry in different subfields of philosophy. In philosophy of mind, philosophers have been trying to understand imaginative attitudes’ place in cognitive architecture. In aesthetics, philosophers have been trying to understand the phenomenon of imaginative resistance. By connecting these two lines of inquiry, we hope to find mutual illumination of an attitude (or cluster of attitudes) and a phenomenon that have vexed philosophers. Our (...)
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  • Hume on the Imagination.Fabian Dorsch - 2015 - Rero Doc Digital Library:1-28.
    This is the original, longer draft for my entry on Hume in the 'The Routledge Hand- book of Philosophy of Imagination', edited by Amy Kind and published by Routledge in 2016 (see the separate entry). — Please always cite the Routledge version, unless there are passages concerned that did not make it into the Handbook for reasons of length. — -/- This chapter overviews Hume’s thoughts on the nature and the role of imagining, with an almost exclusive focus on the (...)
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  • Imagination and Epistemology.Jonathan Ichikawa - 2008 - Dissertation, Rutgers University
    Among the tools the epistemologist brings to the table ought to be, I suggest, a firm understanding of the imagination--one that is informed by philosophy of mind, cognitive psychology, and neuroscience. In my dissertation, I highlight several ways in which such an understanding of the imagination can yield insight into traditional questions in epistemology. My dissertation falls into three parts. In Part I, I argue that dreaming should be understood in imaginative terms, and that this has important implications for questions (...)
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  • Hume e l’immaginazione ricreativa.Fabian Dorsch - 2013 - Rivista di Estetica 53:25-54.
  • Feelings, Imagination and Self-Understanding.Silva Filho & J. Waldomiro - 2010 - Integr Psych Behav.
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  • On the Epistemic Costs of Implicit Bias.Tamar Szabó Gendler - 2011 - Philosophical Studies 156 (1):33-63.
  • Imaginability, Morality, and Fictional Truth: Dissolving the Puzzle of 'Imaginative Resistance'.Cain Samuel Todd - 2009 - Philosophical Studies 143 (2):187-211.
    This paper argues that there is no genuine puzzle of ‘imaginative resistance’. In part 1 of the paper I argue that the imaginability of fictional propositions is relative to a range of different factors including the ‘thickness’ of certain concepts, and certain pre-theoretical and theoretical commitments. I suggest that those holding realist moral commitments may be more susceptible to resistance and inability than those holding non-realist commitments, and that it is such realist commitments that ultimately motivate the problem. However, I (...)
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  • Morality and the Imagination: Real-World Moral Beliefs Interfere with Imagining Fictional Content.Jessica Black & Jennifer Barnes - 2020 - Philosophical Psychology 33 (7):1018-1044.
    The purpose of this paper was to test whether imaginative resistance – a term used in the philosophical literature to describe the reluctance to imagine counter-moral worlds – is experienced by peo...
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  • Attending Emotionally to Fiction.Cain Todd - 2012 - Journal of Value Inquiry 46 (4):449-465.
    This paper addresses the so-called paradox of fiction, the problem of explaining how we can have emotional responses towards fiction. I claim that no account has yet provided an adequate explanation of how we can respond with genuine emotions when we know that the objects of our responses are fictional. I argue that we should understand the role played by the imagination in our engagement with fiction as functionally equivalent to that which it plays under the guise of acceptance in (...)
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  • Empirically Investigating Imaginative Resistance.Shen-yi Liao, Nina Strohminger & Chandra Sekhar Sripada - 2014 - British Journal of Aesthetics 54 (3):339-355.
    Imaginative resistance refers to a phenomenon in which people resist engaging in particular prompted imaginative activities. Philosophers have primarily theorized about this phenomenon from the armchair. In this paper, we demonstrate the utility of empirical methods for investigating imaginative resistance. We present two studies that help to establish the psychological reality of imaginative resistance, and to uncover one factor that is significant for explaining this phenomenon but low in psychological salience: genre. Furthermore, our studies have the methodological upshot of showing (...)
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  • Imaginative Resistance.Emine Hande Tuna - 2020 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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  • Imagination.Shen-yi Liao & Tamar Gendler - 2019 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    To imagine is to form a mental representation that does not aim at things as they actually, presently, and subjectively are. One can use imagination to represent possibilities other than the actual, to represent times other than the present, and to represent perspectives other than one’s own. Unlike perceiving and believing, imagining something does not require one to consider that something to be the case. Unlike desiring or anticipating, imagining something does not require one to wish or expect that something (...)
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  • Imaginative Resistance as Imagistic Resistance.Uku Tooming - 2018 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 48 (5):684-706.
    When we are invited to imagine an unacceptable moral proposition to be true in fiction, we feel resistance when we try to imagine it. Despite this, it is nonetheless possible to suppose that the proposition is true. In this paper, I argue that existing accounts of imaginative resistance are unable to explain why only attempts to imagine the truth of moral propositions cause resistance. My suggestion is that imagination, unlike supposition, involves mental imagery and imaginative resistance arises when imagery that (...)
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  • Hume and the Recreative Imagination.Fabian Dorsch - 2013 - Rivista di Estetica 53:25-54.
    Two particular approaches to the imagination as a recreative capacity have recently gained prominence: neo-Humeanism and simulationatism. According to neo-Humeanism, imaginings have cognitions as a constitutive part of their representational contents; while simulationalists maintain that, in imagining, we essentially simulate the occurrence of certain cognitive states. Two other kinds of constitutive dependence, that figure regularly in the debate, concern the necessity of cogni­tions for, respectively, the causation and the semantic power of imaginings. In what follows, I dis­cuss each of these (...)
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  • Fictional Theism.Roy Sorensen - 2015 - Analysis 75 (4):539-550.
    Creationists believe that C. K. Chesterton created Father Brown in his detective stories. Since creating implies a creation, Father Brown exists. Atheists object that the same reasoning could prove the existence of God. But creationists such as Jonathan Schaffer insist atheists do believe that God exists. Serious metaphysics rarely concerns existence. The disagreement between the theist and the atheist is about the nature of God, not His existence. Schaffer underestimates the religious imagination. There could be a religion that explicitly regarded (...)
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