Sunday Book-Thought 56

What I have really been discussing here is story’s capacity to create a special kind of ethical discourse. Emma and Mansfield Park are novels, not philosophy, but in them the representation of human actions and especially the evaluation of the worthiness or culpability of those actions is clearly based on an ethical theory that Austen forthrightly deploys as the touchstone for her judgments about her characters’ ethical agency. To see these judgments worked out, to participate in them as readers, and to recognize them as active principles of everyday conduct rather than as yes-or-no answers to Sunday school questions about “how to be good” is to receive the kind of practice at moral deliberation that all of us need if we are to be liberated from the clichés, prejudices, catchwords, and knee-jerk reactions of everyday society.
Marshall GregoryShaped by Stories: The Ethical Power of Narratives (Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press, 2009), pp. 189-190.

Sunday Book-Thought 50

One consequence of this model of intelligence, especially of any computer implementation of this model, is that such a system runs the risk of being described as only appearing to be intelligent without actually being intelligent. In some sense, intelligence is in the eye of the beholder, and most beholders are prejudiced by skin. If the skin of the teller of the story is fleshy and humanlike, we are likely to consider the algorithm that produced the story to be an intelligent one, except perhaps in the case of the grandfather who we would agree was intelligent but is now telling the same story too often. But if the skin is plastic and we suspect that a computer is inside we are likely to claim that the algorithms being used to produce the same story were somehow just unintelligent retrieval methods.
In the end all we have, machine or human, are stories and methods of finding and using those stories.
Roger SchankTell Me a Story: Narrative and Intelligence (Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 1995), p. 16