Comments on Rafe McGregor’s Narrative Criminology

Matravers, Derek (2020). Comments on Rafe McGregor’s Narrative Criminology. The Journal of Aesthetic Education, 54(4) pp. 19–25.



This paper makes three responses to Rafe McGregor's book Narrative Justice.The first, with which McGregor may well agree, raises skeptical questions about the current empirical literature on readers of narratives. The second questions the relation between the moral or ethical status of actual wrongs and the moral and ethical status of merely represented wrongs. The final response examines McGregor's argument that the vehicle of our cognitive gain from narratives is the form of the narrative rather than the content. The response has two parts. First, it asks whether there can ever be anything wrong with form abstracted from content; second, it suggests that McGregor's argument involves an unhelpful mix of what is labeled the "internal" and the "external" perspective.

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