David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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British Journal of Aesthetics 44 (4):378-392 (2004)
The current essay describes aspects of C. I. Lewis’s rarely cited contributions to aesthetics, focusing primarily on the conception of aesthetic experience developed in An Analysis of Knowledge and Valuation. Lewis characterized aesthetic value as a proper subset of inherent value, which he understood as the power to occasion intrinsically valued experiences. He distinguished aesthetic experiences from experiences more generally in terms of eight conditions. Roughly, he proposed that aesthetic experiences have a highly positive, preponderantly intrinsic value realized through contemplation, where the experience is indicative of the object’s reliable and characteristic inherent value. Objections to this account motivate a revised, neo-Lewisian proposal.
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