In this conversation with RevDem editor Kasia Krzyżanowska, Peter Brooks — author of the new book Seduced by Story. The Use and Abuse of Narrative — discusses the “storyfication” of reality; explains why we need stories; ponders the impact fiction has on our lives; and depicts the dangers oversimplified narratives pose to our democratic societies.
Peter Brooks is Sterling Professor Emeritus of Comparative Literature at Yale University. He has published on narrative, psychoanalysis, law, largely in nineteenth and twentieth-century literature; in addition, he is the author of two novels. His critical books include The Melodramatic Imagination, Reading for the Plot, Troubling Confessions, Realist Vision, Henry James Goes to Paris, Flaubert in the Ruins of Paris, and Balzac’s Lives, and, most recently, Seduced by Story: The Use and Abuse of Narrative.
Seduced by Story. The Use and Abuse of Narrative is published by New York Review Books.