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  1. Stephen Davies & Philip Alperson (2015). The Philosophy of Art. Wiley-Blackwell.
    Now available in a fully revised and updated second edition, this accessible and insightful introduction outlines the central theories and ongoing debates in the philosophy of art. Covers a wide range of topics, including the definition and interpretation of art, the connections between artistic and ethical judgment, and the expression and elicitation of emotions through art Includes discussion of prehistoric, non-Western, and popular mass arts, extending the philosophical conversation beyond the realm of Fine Art Details concrete applications of complex theoretical (...)
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  2.  15
    Stephen Davies (2012). The Artful Species: Aesthetics, Art, and Evolution. OUP Oxford.
    Stephen Davies presents a fascinating exploration of the idea that art, and our aesthetic sensibilities more generally, should be understood as an element in human evolution. He asks: Do animals have aesthetics? Do our aesthetic preferences have prehistoric roots? Is art universal? What is the biological role of aesthetic and artistic behaviour?
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  3.  11
    Stephen Davies (2015). Defining Art and Artworlds. Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 73 (4):375-384.
    Most art is made by people with a well-developed concept of art and who are familiar with its forms and genres as well as with the informal institutions of its presentation and reception. This is reflected in philosophers’ proposed definitions. The earliest artworks were made by people who lacked the concept and in a context that does not resemble the art traditions of established societies, however. An adequate definition must accommodate their efforts. The result is a complex, hybrid definition: something (...)
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  4.  6
    Stephen Davies (2015). How Ancient is Art? Evental Aesthetics 4 (2):22-45.
    In this paper I suggest that music and dance of an artful kind could pre-date the emergence of our species by several hundred thousand years. Our progenitor, H. heidelbergensis, had the necessary physiological resources and social capacities. And she inherited older modes of moving and vocalizing that could have laid the foundations for dance and music. Admittedly, for her, these artistic activities would have been more about sharing and expressing emotions than about symbolizing abstract ideas or conveying complex thoughts. But (...)
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  5.  3
    Sarah Davies & Phil Macnaghten (2010). Narratives of Mastery and Resistance: Lay Ethics of Nanotechnology. [REVIEW] NanoEthics 4 (2):141-151.
    This paper contributes towards a lay ethics of nanotechnology through an analysis of talk from focus groups designed to examine how laypeople grapple with the meaning of a technology ‘in-the-making’. We describe the content of lay ethical concerns before suggesting that this content can be understood as being structured by five archetypal narratives which underpin talk. These we term: ‘the rich get richer and the poor get poorer’; ‘kept in the dark’; ‘opening Pandora’s box’; ‘messing with nature’; and ‘be careful (...)
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  6.  44
    S. Davies, R. Hopkins, J. Robinson & M. Padro (2004). On Richard Wollheim. British Journal of Aesthetics 44 (3):213-225.
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  7. Stephen Davies (2001). Musical Works and Performances: A Philosophical Exploration. Oxford University Press.
    What are musical works? Are they discovered or created? Can recordings substitute faithfully for live performances? This book considers these and other intriguing questions. It first outlines the nature of musical works, their relation to performances, and their notational specification; it then considers authenticity in performance, musical traditions, and recordings. Comprehensive and original, the volume discusses many kinds of music, applying its conclusions to issues as diverse as the authentic performance movement, the cultural integrity of ethnic music, and the implications (...)
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  8.  44
    Stephen Davies (1994). Musical Meaning and Expression. Cornell University Press.
    But what does music mean, and how does it mean?Stephen Davies addresses these questions in this sophisticated and knowledgeable overview of current theories in ...
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  9.  85
    Susanne Davies (2007). Book Review: Sex and Pleasure in Western Culture. [REVIEW] Thesis Eleven 88 (1):136-139.
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  10.  69
    Stephen Davies (2006). The Philosophy of Art. Blackwell Pub..
    Written with clarity, wit, and rigor, The Philosophy of Art provides an incisive account of the core topics in the field. The first volume in the new Foundations of the Philosophy of the Arts series, designed to provide crisp introductions to the fundamental general questions about art, as well as to questions about the several arts (such as literature, music or painting). Presents a clear and insightful introduction to central topics and on-going debates in the philosophy of art. Eight sections (...)
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  11.  71
    Stephen Davies (2011). Infectious Music: Music-Listener Emotional Contagion. In Amy Coplan & Peter Goldie (eds.), Empathy: Philosophical and Psychological Perspectives. Oxford University Press
  12. Constantijn Koopman & Stephen Davies (2001). Musical Meaning in a Broader Perspective. Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 59 (3):261–273.
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  13.  97
    Stephen Davies (1991). Definitions of Art. Cornell University Press.
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  14.  27
    Stephen Davies (2003). Themes in the Philosophy of Music. Oxford University Press.
    Representing Stephen Davies's best shorter writings, these essays outline developments within the philosophy of music over the last two decades, and summarize the state of play at the beginning of a new century. Including two new and previously unpublished pieces, they address both perennial questions and contemporary controversies, such as that over the 'authentic performance' movement, and the impact of modern technology on the presentation and reception of musical works. Rather than attempting to reduce musical works to a single type, (...)
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  15. Stephen Davies (1995). Relativism in Interpretation. Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 53 (1):8-13.
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  16. Stephen Davies (2009). Life is a Passacaglia. Philosophy and Literature 33 (2):315-328.
    Arthur C. Danto taught that an artwork’s identity and content depend on "an atmosphere of theory the eye cannot de[s]cry" (1964:580). By "theory", he did not mean the ideas developed by philosophers of art. His point was that an artwork can be properly recognized and appreciated only when seen in relation to the heritage of works, writings, practices, genres, and conventions that form the ground on which it stands out as subject. In brief, the work must be seen against the (...)
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  17. Stephen Davies (2006). Artistic Expression and the Hard Case of Pure Music. In Matthew Kieran (ed.), Contemporary debates in aesthetics and the philosophy of art. Blackwell Publishing
    In its narrative, dramatic, and representational genres, art regularly depicts contexts for human emotions and their expressions. It is not surprising, then, that these artforms are often about emotional experiences and displays, and that they are also concerned with the expression of emotion. What is more interesting is that abstract art genres may also include examples that are highly expressive of human emotion. Pure music – that is, stand-alone music played on musical instruments excluding the human voice, and without words, (...)
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  18.  59
    Stephen Davies, Robert Hopkins, Jenefer Robinson & Elisabeth Schellekens (2004). Aesthetics and Subjectivity: From Kant to Nietzsche. British Journal of Aesthetics 44 (3):304-307.
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  19.  86
    Stephen Davies (2004). The Cluster Theory of Art. British Journal of Aesthetics 44 (3):297-300.
    Berys Gaut has recently defended a cluster account of art. He proposes it as superior to other anti-essentialist positions. I argue that his defence of this claim is unconvincing. Not only is the cluster theory consistent with the current crop of disjunctive definitions, it is at its most plausible when seen in such terms.
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  20.  12
    Stephen Davies (1990). A Response to McFee's Response. Grazer Philosophische Studien 38:185-186.
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  21.  91
    Stephen Davies (2004). The Know-How of Musical Performance. Philosophy of Music Education Review 12 (2):154-159.
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  22.  97
    Stephen Davies (2006). Authors' Intentions, Literary Interpretation, and Literary Value. British Journal of Aesthetics 46 (3):223-247.
    I discuss three theories regarding the interpretation of fictional literature: actual intentionalism (author's intentions constrain how their works are to be interpreted), hypothetical intentionalism (interpretations are justified as those most likely intended by a postulated author), and the value-maximizing theory (interpretations presenting the work in the most favourable light are to be preferred). I claim that actual intentionalism cannot account for the appropriateness or legitimacy of some interpretations, or alternatively that it must be weakened to the point that the considerations (...)
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  23. Stephen Davies (1990). Violins or Viols?: A Reason to Fret. Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 48 (2):147-151.
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  24.  19
    Stephen Davies (2012). On Defining Music. The Monist 95 (4):535-555.
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  25.  57
    Stephen Davies (1997). Why Listen to Sad Music If It Makes One Feel Sad? In Jenefer Robinson (ed.), Music & Meaning. Cornell University Press
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  26.  55
    Stephen Davies (2006). Aesthetic Judgements, Artworks and Functional Beauty. Philosophical Quarterly 56 (223):224-241.
    I offer an analysis of the role played by consideration of an item's functions when it is judged aesthetically. The account applies also to artworks, of which some serve extrinsic functions (such as the glorification of God and the communication of religious lore) and others have the function of being contemplated for their own sake alone. Along the way, I deny that aesthetic judgements fit the model of judgements either of free beauty or of dependent beauty, given how these two (...)
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  27.  19
    Stephen Davies (2007/2010). Philosophical Perspectives on Art. New York;Oxford University Press.
    Philosophical Perspectives on Art presents a series of essays devoted to two of the most fundamental topics in the philosophy of art: the distinctive character of artworks and what is involved in understanding them as art. In Part I, Stephen Davies considers a wide range of questions about the nature and definition of art. Can art be defined, and if so, which definitions are the most plausible? Do we make and consume art because there are evolutionary advantages to doing so? (...)
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  28. Stephen Davies (1991). The Ontology of Musical Works and the Authenticity of Their Performances. Noûs 25 (1):21-41.
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  29.  10
    Anke Ehlers, Jürgen Margraf, Sylvia Davies & Walton T. Roth (1988). Selective Processing of Threat Cues in Subjects with Panic Attacks. Cognition and Emotion 2 (3):201-219.
  30.  57
    S. Davies (2013). Performing Musical Works Authentically: A Response to Dodd. British Journal of Aesthetics 53 (1):71-75.
    A kind of musical authenticity Julian Dodd thinks has been neglected, interpretive authenticity, as he calls it, is intended to provide both an insightful and faithful understanding of the work. This kind of authenticity is distinguished from score compliance authenticity (a view I have defended) on grounds that an authentic musical interpretation can sometimes deliberately depart from the score. I argue that none of the four examples Dodd offers in favour of this hypothesis is uncontroversial. I have less faith than (...)
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  31. Stephen Davies (1997). ""John Cage's 4'33": Is It Music? Australasian Journal of Philosophy 75 (4):448 – 462.
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  32.  29
    S. Davies (2010). Why Art Is Not a Spandrel. British Journal of Aesthetics 50 (4):333-341.
    If one views humans’ creation and appreciation of art as grounded in our biological nature, it might be tempting to see art as a spandrel, as an adventitious by-product of some adaptation without adaptive significance in itself. Such a position connects art to our evolved human nature yet apparently avoids the demands of demonstrating how art behaviours enhanced the fitness of our ancestors in the Upper Paleolithic. In this paper I explore two arguments that count against the view that art (...)
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  33.  72
    Stephen Davies (1999). Response to Robert Stecker. British Journal of Aesthetics 39 (3):282-287.
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  34.  42
    Stephen Davies (1997). First Art and Art's Definition. Southern Journal of Philosophy 35 (1):19-34.
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  35.  64
    Stephen Davies (1988). Transcription, Authenticity and Performance. British Journal of Aesthetics 28 (3):216-227.
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  36.  42
    S. Davies (2013). The Mess Inside: Narrative, Emotion, and the Mind. British Journal of Aesthetics 53 (2):247-249.
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  37.  78
    Stephen Davies (1983). Is Music a Language of the Emotions? British Journal of Aesthetics 23 (3):222-233.
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  38.  53
    S. Davies (1980). The Expression of Emotion in Music. Mind 89 (353):67-86.
  39.  80
    Stephen Davies (2003). I Wanna Be Me: Rock Music and the Politics of Identity. British Journal of Aesthetics 43 (2):199-201.
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  40.  49
    Stephen Davies (1987). Authenticity in Musical Performance. British Journal of Aesthetics 27 (1):39-50.
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  41.  49
    C. Currie, J. Green, S. Davies & C. Morgan (1997). Cost Effectiveness of Medical Ethics Training. Journal of Medical Ethics 23 (5):328-328.
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  42.  72
    Stephen Davies (1988). Authenticity in Performance: A Reply to James O. Young. British Journal of Aesthetics 28 (4):373-376.
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  43.  21
    Stephen Davies (2002). Profundity in Instrumental Music. British Journal of Aesthetics 42 (4):343-356.
    According to Peter Kivy, to be profound, music would have to be about a profound subject that is treated in an exemplary way. Instrumental music does not satisfy this definition; usually it is not about anything humanly important, and when it is, it can convey no more than banalities. Like others, I argue against the propositional character of Kivy's ‘aboutness’ criterion; profundity can be revealed or displayed other than via statements and descriptions. I am less inclined than some of Kivy's (...)
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  44.  19
    Stephen Davies (1982). The Aesthetic Relevance of Authors' and Painters' Intentions. Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 41 (1):65-76.
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  45.  26
    Stephen Davies (2008). Musical Works and Orchestral Colour. British Journal of Aesthetics 48 (4):363-375.
    known as timbral sonicism, accepts that a musical work's orchestral colour is a factor in its identity, but denies that the use of the specified instruments is required for an authentic rendition of the work provided that sounds as of those instruments are achieved. This position has been defended by Julian Dodd. In arguing against his view, I appeal to empirical work showing that composers, musicians, and listeners typically hear through music to the actions that go into its production. In (...)
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  46.  75
    Stephen J. Davies (2005). Ellen Dissanayake's Evolutionary Aesthetic. Biology and Philosophy 20 (2-3):291-304.
    Dissanayake argues that art behaviors – which she characterizes first as patterns or syndromes of creation and response and later as rhythms and modes of mutuality – are universal, innate, old, and a source of intrinsic pleasure, these being hallmarks of biological adaptation. Art behaviors proved to enhance survival by reinforcing cooperation, interdependence, and community, and, hence, became selected for at the genetic level. Indeed, she claims that art is essential to the fullest realization of our human nature. I make (...)
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  47.  62
    Stephen Davies (2010). Functional Beauty Examined. Canadian Journal of Philosophy 40 (2):315-332.
    In Functional Beauty, Glenn Parsons and Allen Carlson defend the importance of Functional Beauty—that is, the view that an item's fitness (or otherwise) for its proper function is a source of positive (or negative) aesthetic value—within a unified comprehensive aesthetic theory that encompasses art, the everyday, animals and organic nature, natural environments and inorganic nature, and artifacts. In the following section, I outline the main lines of argument presented in the book. I then criticize some of these arguments. I do (...)
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  48.  8
    S. Davies (2014). Replies to My Critics. British Journal of Aesthetics 54 (4):493-498.
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  49.  7
    Stephen Davies (2001). Una improbable última paraula sobre la mort de l'art. Enrahonar 32 (33):191-201.
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  50.  50
    Stephen Davies (1992). Mozart's Requiem? A Reply to Levinson. British Journal of Aesthetics 32 (3):254-257.
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