Fact and fiction  

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This page Fact and fiction is part of the fiction series.Illustration: Screenshot from A Trip to the Moon (1902) Georges Méliès
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This page Fact and fiction is part of the fiction series.
Illustration: Screenshot from A Trip to the Moon (1902) Georges Méliès
Ancient Rome (1757) by Giovanni Paolo Panini, a real painting depicting imaginary paintings of actual Roman antiquities.
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Ancient Rome (1757) by Giovanni Paolo Panini, a real painting depicting imaginary paintings of actual Roman antiquities.

Imaginary gardens with real toads in them. --Marianne Moore


The mind of man can imagine nothing which has not really existed --Edgar Allan Poe, 1840


Truth is stranger than fiction


"Fact and fiction are old acquaintances. They are both derivatives of Latin words. Fact comes from facere--to make or do. Fiction comes from fingere--to make or shape." --Elements of Fiction (1968), Robert Scholes

The Appian Way as it appeared in Piranesi's imagination (1756), part fact, part fiction.
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The Appian Way as it appeared in Piranesi's imagination (1756), part fact, part fiction.
Les Poires, this is not the King!
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Les Poires, this is not the King!

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

This page explores the tension field between fact and fiction, which are often seen as opposites, see unity of opposites.

Contents

Literature

The truth of fiction

Philosophy_and_literature#The_truth_of_fiction

Literary works also pose issues concerning truth and the philosophy of language. In educated opinion, at least, it is commonly reputed as true that Sherlock Holmes lived in London. It is also considered true that Samuel Pepys lived in London. Yet Sherlock Holmes never lived anywhere at all; he is a fictional character, he never existed. Samuel Pepys, contrarily, is judged to have been a real person. Contemporary interest in Holmes and in Pepys share strong similarities; the only reason why anyone knows either of their names is because of an abiding interest in reading about their alleged deeds and words. These two statements would appear to belong to two different orders of truth. Further problems arise concerning the truth value of statements about fictional worlds and characters that can be implied but are nowhere explicitly stated by the sources for our knowledge about them, such as Sherlock Holmes had only one head or Sherlock Holmes never travelled to the moon.

See also

In history

General terms

See also




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Fact and fiction" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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