[Scientific Study of Literature 1:1] 2011
► pp. 104–112
In defense of commonality
Looking into our individual differences, either as a group (e.g., women; Israelis who support boycotts of Israel) or as a particular human being is important and interesting. Despite assuming commonalities, the persistent quest for the uniqueness of the individual, however, is instrumental in obscuring the reality that we are all a lot more similar than different. In the same manner, the search for the uniqueness of poetic language may also blur the fact that both poetic and non-poetic linguistic uses follow, in most part, similar cognitive principles, and may have similar aesthetic effects, whether in production or in comprehension. Good science underlines that which we have in common even while looking at our differences; at the end of the day, when our idiosyncrasy is filtered out, our similarities stand out quite clearly. Clearly, studying our uniqueness only as well as studying both our idiosyncratic and shared characteristics are political choices. Even as scientists, we are always faced with a choice.