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Profile: Elisa Galgut (University of Cape Town)
  1. Elisa Galgut (2014). Hume's Aesthetic Standard. Hume Studies 38 (2):183-200.
    In his famous essay “Of the Standard of Taste,” Hume seeks to reconcile two conflicting intuitions—one affirming the subjectivity and variety of taste and the other acknowledging the existence of an artistic standard that is both based on taste and has stood the test of time—by postulating “ideal critics”1 who can serve as the arbiters of taste. However, because philosophers disagree about the role of the ideal critics themselves, instead of settling the matter, Hume’s attempt at reconciliation has created more (...)
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  2. Elisa Galgut (2011). Antithetical Arts: On the Ancient Quarrel Between Literature and Music – Peter Kivy. Philosophical Quarterly 61 (243):442-444.
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  3. Elisa Galgut (2010). Projective Properties and Expression in Literary Appreciation. Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 68 (2):143-153.
    The paper defends Wollheim’s account of aesthetic expressive perception by showing that it may fruitfully be extended to artistic genres other than painting. The paper hopes to show the richness of Wollheim’s theory of expressive projection as an account of aesthetic perception. In investigating the application of Wollheim’s account of artistic expression to literature, I shall illustrate how understanding expression as the result of the projective activity of the writer is a useful way of understanding some of the expressive properties (...)
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  4. Elisa Galgut (2009). Tragedy and Reparation. In Pedro Alexis Tabensky (ed.), The Positive Function of Evil. Palgrave Macmillan.
    The Kleinian psychoanalyst Hanna Segal argues for the reparative nature of art, and especially of the genre of classical tragedy. According to Kleinian theory, healthy psychological development requires that early infantile aggressive and destructive emotions are worked through; such “working through” is necessary for the development of conscience, for feelings of empathy, as well as for cognitive development. It is also a necessary condition for creative activity. Segal examines the roots of the impulse to create by looking specifically at the (...)
     
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  5. Elisa Galgut (2005). Simulation and Irrationality. Philosophical Papers 34 (1):25-44.
    In this paper, I hope to show how a recent theory in the philosophy of mind concerning how we ‘read’ the minds of others – namely, Heal’s version of simulation theory – is consistent with the view that the kind of understanding we bring to bear on the irrational is different in kind from the way we understand one another in the course of everyday life. I shall attempt to show that Heal’s version of simulation theory (co-cognition) is to be (...)
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  6. Elisa Galgut (2005). Wishful Thinking and the Unconscious: A Reply to Gouws. South African Journal of Philosophy 24 (1):14-21.
    This paper argues against the view that the Freudian unconscious can be understood as an extension of ordinary belief-desire psychology. The paper argues that Freud’s picture of the mind challenges the paradigm of folk psychology, as it is understood by much contemporary philosophy of psychology and cognitive science. The dynamic unconscious postulated by psychoanalysis operates according to rules and principles which are distinct in kind from those rules that organise rational and conscious thought. Psychoanalysis offers us a radical reconception of (...)
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  7. Elisa Galgut (2003). Do We Weep for Cordelia? South African Journal of Philosophy 22 (3):267-275.
    'It is ... exactly because Hecuba is nothing to us that her sorrows are so suitable a motive for a tragedy.' Oscar Wilde Much of the contemporary debate concerning the nature and role of fictive emotions has argued that we do feel garden-variety emotions for fictional characters; the puzzle has been to account for this, given our knowledge of their fictional status. In this paper I argue that many of the emotional responses we have towards fictional characters are nothing like (...)
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  8. Elisa Galgut (2002). Poetic Faith and Prosaic Concerns. A Defense of “Suspension of Disbelief”. South African Journal of Philosophy 21 (3):190-199.
    This paper defends a version of “suspension of disbelief” in an analysis of the problem concerning our emotional responses to fictional characters. The paper begins with an analysis of the issues, as raised initially by Colin Radford. It then offers an examination of Coleridge's notion of the suspension of disbelief. It is argued that a developed version of this concept provides a solution to Radford's problem. The concept is defended against possible objections. Finally, its psychological plausibility is examined. S. Afr. (...)
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  9. Elisa Galgut (2001). The Poetry and the Pity: Hume's Account of Tragic Pleasure. British Journal of Aesthetics 41 (4):411-424.
    I defend Hume's account of tragic pleasure against various objections. I examine his account of the emotions in order to clarify his "conversion theory". I also argue that Hume does not give us a theory of tragedy as an aesthetic genre, but rather elucidates the felt experience of a particular work of tragedy. I offer a partial reading of King Lear by way of illustration. Finally, I suggest that the experiences of aesthetic pleasure, and aesthetic sadness, share certain qualities. "Tragic (...)
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