The Ends of Literary Narrative

Serious literary fictional narratives seem important; they have a significant place in university curricula. But why are they important? And what makes them serious and literary, as opposed to or in addition to just fictional and fun? They seem not to embody accredited knowledge in anything like the ways in which it is embodied in scientific treatises, well-documented histories, or mathematical proofs. These questions are investigated by taking up the topic of how literary narratives reach their endings. Understanding poetic closure is, it is suggested, central to understanding the cognitive work that literary narratives do.