I’m referring to the series of lectures that Popper gave at the University of Chicago in 1938. These lectures formed the basis for the book “Logic and Society” which was later expanded in volumes entitled “Philosophy of Science and Politics”Social Philosophy and Social Problems”. All of this is important to know but I’m going to focus on the first of those three. The History and Theory of Literary Criticism.
Popper begins his series with a discussion of the distinction between science and art. He starts this section by telling the story of how he and his wife were at a dinner party once and the host of the event asked them to imagine that they were having lunch with a different set of guests. What he wanted was for them to imagine that they were dining at the table of a scientific society. The point he was trying to make is that the sciences and their theories are not true and are in fact part of the culture of the scientist-at-large and that the public’s idea of those beliefs are false.
Popper then goes on to argue that the science is in fact part of the culture and that it would not be accurate to say that the scientific community is a false culture. He argues that instead, we should be talking about those beliefs that the scientist is forced to justify through his own actions and those that are in agreement with their beliefs. The scientists do have a choice with their own beliefs, since the theories they create must be supported by evidence and other theories must support their own.
Popper goes into this discussion again in volume two of his series, where he states that if the scientists were not forced to justify their theories, then there would be no need to give them a name or even to have an organization. Instead, he says that a new title could be given to the theories that they produce. and that the name would be the theory of the public and would become accepted as an objective truth. and that the theory of the public would mean any theory that the public agrees with.
In Volume Three of his series, Popper goes into the theory of social problems in his series of lectures. He begins the series with a conversation about whether there is justice or unfairness in the distribution of wealth among various groups. and whether all groups should receive equal amounts.
Popper tells his audience that he believes that justice is the distribution of the good in the world and that unfairness is the distribution of the bad. He says that fairness can only exist if each individual gets the same amount that he or she deserves. In his lectures, he points out the difference between fair distribution and unfair distribution and argues that unfair distribution is not equal to unfair because some people are given more than others while others are given less. He says that the concept of fair distribution is not an arbitrary one because it requires a balance between those who deserve to have what others do and those who deserve to have what the others do not have.
After Popper finished his series on the theory of literature he was disappointed in his philosophy of literature. He felt that he was wrong about a lot of things that he argued in his series. He felt that he was wrong about the role that the literary critic has in the history and theory of literature. He felt that his theory of the critical study of literature was flawed because he said that the critic analytically minded reader does not make art. he also felt that he was wrong about the existence of aesthetic form, as he felt that critics must have a sense of perspective.
He also felt that his theory on literature was not consistent with the concept of modernism, in literature. He believed that the modernists are wrong to say that the creation of literature is not a part of the society. the society’s life and history. He also felt that he was wrong about the idea that literature is a process and not something that is created by a single writer.
Popper concluded that he believed that the concept of literature is a part of the society and history. He thought that there are different theories about the creation of literature in different cultures. and he believed that different theories of literature are not equivalent.