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Political Fiction - Essay Example

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This paper attempts to show knowledge and appreciation of methodological issues by focusing on political fiction in the US and the UK. General issues of representation shall be addressed as well as the uses of fiction in writing about politics. It shall identify the problems with political representation, the reasons why anyone interested in politics should study fiction, and what political fiction can tell us.
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Political Fiction
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Download file to see previous pages It can serve as a weapon towards change in a prevailing social system, tackle direct social and political repercussions, and discuss social struggle. Fiction can employ a particular topic and convey meaning and symbol related to an existing social and political system.
The significance of fiction in history is not only confined within the realm of literature, but also explores the domain of politics. Fiction is seen to have worked its way in the political domain when Ignacio Salome's novel; Fontamara (1933) became popular upon gaining a favourable opinion of Mussolini's Fascism (Hanne 1994). Likewise, Alexander Solzhenitsyn's One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich (1962) personally authorized for publication by Soviet leader Khrushchev in order to discredit Stalin, is another example of fiction being influenced by politics. However, this connection is not limited to external influencing but extends to the more important functions of fiction and politics - that of the conveyance of meaning and symbol of political phenomena through their depiction of the fiction. Likewise, the realm of politics is likened to a fiction, including all its elements from plot to setting, characters, and scenes. Such is made possible through political representation embodied in the fiction, especially when it is a political novel.
The Problems with Political Representation
It is from assumptions, biases, and news reports from which political beliefs are normally spring, which makes politics a drama that takes place in an assumed world in which people as spectators, do not directly observe or touch. Politics is a domain that consists of images and models wherein people usually translate the reported news, a task considered a necessary undertaking (Edelman 1995). Edelman says that this translation is seen in an example in which a report about American missiles were launched against Baghdad to punish the Iraqi dictator which creates meaning for everyone's repertoire on the images of images of military actions, Arabs, and how war brings devastation even to civilians. Political phenomena are thus not taken as they are without any political representation involved. More so, political representation is an essential part of how symbols and messages are conveyed, in that in another example set by Edelman (1995), a report about an increase or reduction of welfare benefits brings images of cheaters and victims, as well as the possible consequences of such increase or reduction in relation to tax rates, and so on. These are examples of political images being drawn on the minds of people caused by attached meanings and assumptions on them.
Political fiction often offers direct criticism of a present government, society, or political figure and presents an alternative of a sometimes fantastic reality, to what is being criticized (Edelman 1995). In doing such, political fiction often employs satire like The Simpsons in its depiction of the Western culture.
It may be inferred that beliefs about politics and political discourse are products of art in which complex causal connection is drawn. This being said, Edelman states that art is a ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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