Download FUN!: What Entertainment Tells Us About Living a Good Life by Alan McKee PDF

By Alan McKee

Combining media results with aesthetic ways this ebook deals the 1st tremendous, systematic and coherent account of enjoyable and its significance. yet what precisely is enjoyable and what reasons does it serve? enjoyable is an important component of leisure, and leisure is crucial type of tradition in sleek Western democracies. It demonstrates that enjoyable is on the middle of entertainment's results – leisure either deals its shoppers enjoyable and offers them with the highbrow fabrics to consider the character of fun.

More than this, the booklet argues that leisure exhibits us that enjoyable – excitement with no objective – is on the center of residing a great lifestyles. Illustrated with distinct examples from leisure – from the city Dictionary to The Simpsons, to the tradition novels of Iain M Banks – this booklet is clever, unique, or even (dare we are saying it) fun.

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Extra info for FUN!: What Entertainment Tells Us About Living a Good Life

Example text

His disapproval of debauchery is not argued for, per se—it rather relies on a generalisation from his own preferences to moral judgements about what people should enjoy: [T]he pleasures of the senses can be challenged as not being the most satisfying kind. It can be argued that mental enjoyment is richer, deeper, and ultimately more fulfilling than momentary sensual pleasures … the enjoyment of mental states and activities might be preferred to those of the senses, which are fleeting, shallow and animalistic.

Indeed, Wittgenstein famously claimed that ‘ethics and aesthetics are one and the same’ (Eagleston 2004, p. 595). When Plato argues that non-fiction is better than fiction because it promotes the rational over the emotional, his argument is based on the assumption that a good life privileges the rational over the emotional. As I noted in the Introduction, Plato claims that the ‘highest part of us’ is that part which 28 A. McKEE follow[s] reasoning … The other part of us … we may, I think, call irrational and lazy and inclined to cowardice … [the producer of fiction] wakens and encourages and strengthens the lower elements of the mind to the detriment of reason … the only poetry that should be allowed in a state is hymns to the gods and paeans in praise of good men; once you go beyond that and admit the sweet lyric or epic muse, pleasure and pain become your rulers instead of law and the rational principles commonly accepted as best.

But entertainment also tells us that while theoretically anything can be ‘fun’, there simultaneously exists a majority consensus about what practices most people think are fun, and that those of us whose idea of fun doesn’t fit this majority consensus are … a little bit different. This is the second approach to fun. The character of Marge Simpson provides a wonderful case study for exploring this ‘consensus’ approach to the topic. It is a truism of studying culture that nothing lasts forever except The Simpsons, and as well as being successful and funny, the animated sitcom is also consistently clever and insightful in its thinking about the operation of culture (Irwin et al.

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