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Thread: consistently inconsistent?

  1. #1
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    Poetics

    In "Poetics", Aristotle thinks that "in respect of character, there are four things to be aimed at...the fourth point is consistency: for though the subject of imitation, who suggested the type,be inconsistency, still he must be consistently inconsistent."What on earth does the sentence mean? Would you please tell me?
    Last edited by Wind&Sand; 01-01-2007 at 01:22 AM.

  2. #2
    Mad Hatter Mark F.'s Avatar
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    In order for us to bleieve in a character he must obey a certain form of logic. So even a character who's crazy needs to respect a certain form of rationality, even though he's irrational. I haven't read "Poetics" so I'm just telling you how I understand it, as there's no context I can't really say for sure.
    "And the worms, they will climb
    The rugged ladder of your spine"

  3. #3
    Voice of Chaos & Anarchy
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    It appears to mean that if a character is characterized as inconsistent, then the character must consistently be inconsistent, rather than being consistent only sometimes.

    Like Mark F. I have not read Poetics, and the complete context is not there, so I am interpreting only what you typed. It is possible that the translation was flawed.

  4. #4
    Watcher by Night mtpspur's Avatar
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    Taking the sentence as a whole (I too have not the read original) it's (to me) reenforcing that characters remain true to their natures. Easy example: The Joker from current Batman comics--a maniac who every action is unpredictable and not consistent with rational behavior. But this behavior is what defines them. Hope this helps.

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