About this topic
Summary This category contains books and articles related to the history of both aesthetics and the philosophy of art.  It includes works that deal directly with the history of the discipline, works that deal with aesthetic concepts as treated by different authors from a  historical perspective, and works that reflect upon the status of the disciple.
Key works While in other philosophical fields, as the general history of philosophy or the history of some other philosophical disciplines, there are a handful of works that could be cited as the key works in the discipline, in the history of aesthetics or of the philosophy of art, it is difficult to point them out. Nevertheless, it is usual to cite, Tatarkiewicz's History of Aesthetics as one of these, although his review of such history ends up in the 1700s. This means that his work ought to be completed with others that either focus in the later development of the discipline (missing, therefore, comprehensiveness) or that also try a full review of the historical development of the field. Among them, we find Beardsley's Aesthetics from Classical Greece to the Present: a short Introduction written from the perspective of analytical philosophy; Bosanquet's A History of Aesthetics originally published in 1892; Gilbert and Kuhn's A History of Esthetics published in 1939; and Aesthetics: The Key Thinkers edited by Alessandron Giovannelli, and very recent (2012).
Introductions Besides the works already mentioned above, any general encyclopedia on aesthetics serves as a good introduction to the problems addressed by the history of aesthetics and of the philosophy of art. In this sense, both Encyclopedia of Aesthetics and The Routledge Companion to Aesthetics can be considered as good starting points.
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2493 found
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1 — 50 / 2493
  1. The Conquest of Time: The Forgotten Power of Art.Derek Allan - manuscript
    It’s common knowledge that those objects we regard as great works of art have a capacity to survive across time. But that observation is only a half-truth: it tells us nothing about the nature of this power of survival – about how art endures. -/- This question was once at the heart of Western thinking about art. The Renaissance solved it by claiming that great art is “timeless”, “eternal” – impervious to time, a belief that exerted a powerful influence on (...)
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  2. Analytic Aesthetics and the Dilemma of Timelessness.Derek Allan - manuscript
    Explores the failure of analytic aesthetics to examine the question of the capacity of art to transcend time, and its own commitment – seldom explicitly acknowledged – to the assumption that this capacity functions through the traditional, but no longer viable, notion of timelessness inherited from Enlightenment aesthetics.
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  3. Ethics and Aesthetics: Alfredo Jaar and the Role of Art in Political Critique.Carolina Drake - manuscript
    Art has a major role in political critique and in the contemporary world of art, ethics, politics, and aesthetics intersect. Using the work of Alfredo Jaar as an example of these intersections, I argue through my reading of Judith Butler, that his art can provide us with better, more egalitarian versions of populations to be perceived as grievable. Once we apprehend grievability, we can affectively apprehend that lives in the context of war and violence are precarious. Here lies the power (...)
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  4. Twentieth Century Aesthetics.M. C. Beardsley - forthcoming - Contemporary Aesthetics.
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  5. Colour in Ancient Art. Jockey Les Arts de la Couleur En Grèce Ancienne … Et Ailleurs. Approches Interdisciplinaires. Pp. 508, B/W & Colour Figs, B/W & Colour Ills, Maps. Athens: École Française d'Athènes, 2018. Paper, €80. Isbn: 978-2-86958-290-3. [REVIEW]Hariclia Brecoulaki - forthcoming - The Classical Review:1-3.
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  6. Ugliness Is in the Gut of the Beholder.Ryan P. Doran - forthcoming - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy.
    I offer the first sustained defence of the claim that ugliness is constituted by the disposition to disgust. I advance three main lines of argument in support of this thesis. First, ugliness and disgustingness tend to lie in the same kinds of things and properties (the argument from ostensions). Second, the thesis is better placed than all existing accounts to accommodate the following facts: ugliness is narrowly and systematically distributed in a heterogenous set of things, ugliness is sometimes enjoyed, and (...)
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  7. Decadence & Aesthetics.Sacha Golob - forthcoming - In Desmarais & Weir (eds.), Decadence. Cambridge University Press.
    he relationship between decadence and aesthetics is an intimate and complex one. Both the stock figure of the aesthete and the aestheticism of ‘art for art’s sake’ are classic decadent tropes with obvious sources in figures such as Théophile Gautier, Walter Pater, Joris-Karl Huysmans. Yet the links between aesthetics and decadence are more conflicted than might first appear: historically, aesthetics has served both as a site for the theorisation of decadence and as the basis of an attempt to stem it. (...)
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  8. Encyclopedia of Aesthetics, 2d, Rev. Ed.Michael Kelly (ed.) - forthcoming - Oxford University Press.
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  9. W. PUCHNER Assisted by A.W. WHITE Greek Theatre Between Antiquity and Independence: A History of Reinvention From the Third Century BC to 1830. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2017. Pp. Xvii + 355. £99.99. 9781107059474. [REVIEW]Stavroula Kiritsi - forthcoming - Journal of Hellenic Studies:1-2.
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  10. Agricultural as the Image of Aesthetics and Ethics: A Comparative View.Mara Miller - forthcoming - Pursuit of Comparative Aesthetics.
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  11. Aesthetics and Mobility–A Short Introduction Into a Moving Field.Ossi Naukkarinen - forthcoming - Contemporary Aesthetics.
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  12. The Continuum Companion to Aesthetics. Ribiero (ed.) - forthcoming
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  13. Intelligible Beauty.James Shelley - forthcoming - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society.
    Arthur Danto argued from the premise that artworks are essentially cognitive to the conclusion that they are incidentally aesthetic. I wonder why Danto, and the very many of us he persuaded, came to believe that the cognitive and the aesthetic oppose one another. I argue, contrary to Danto’s historical claims, that the cognitive and the aesthetic did not come into opposition until the late nineteenth or early twentieth century, and that they were brought into opposition for reasons of art-critical expediency (...)
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  14. On the Third Realm. Cultural Literacy and Arts Education.Ralph A. Smith - forthcoming - Journal of Aesthetic Education.
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  15. The Compass of Beauty: A Search for the Middle.Lars Spuybroek - forthcoming - In Maria Voyatzaki (ed.), Architectural Materialisms: Nonhuman Creativity. Edinburgh University Press.
    This chapter is a rethinking of my earlier “The Ages of Beauty” which investigated Charles Hartshorne’s Diagram of Aesthetic Values. The argument is placed in a long history of beauty being considered as the middle between extremes. It slowly develops into a structure not merely of aesthetic experience but of existence itself, making it a competitor of Heidegger’s fourfold.
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  16. The Aesthetics of the Invisible: Geroge Berkeley and the Modern Aesthetics.Endre Szécsényi - forthcoming - History of European Ideas.
    George Berkeley is usually not discussed in the canonical histories of modern aesthetics. Similarly, Berkeley scholars do not seem to have paid attention to his possible contribution to modern aesthetics. Berkeley exploited certain theoretical potentials of the emerging aesthetic experience that was invented and formulated especially by his contemporaries like Joseph Addison, Richard Steele and Lord Shaftesbury. He applied these elements in shaping a theologico-aesthetic language in the very same period when Francis Hutcheson and Alexander Baumgarten wrote their widely acclaimed (...)
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  17. International Association of Empirical Aesthetics.Paulina A. Tendera & Jakub Wiśniewski - forthcoming - Estetyka I Krytyka 12 (12):249-252.
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  18. Living Form and Living Criticism.Katie Terezakis - forthcoming - In Michael Thompson (ed.), Georg Lukacs Reconsidered: Essays of Politics, Philosophy, and Aesthetics. Continuu,.
  19. A: Morris Weitz: Problems in Aesthetics an Introductory Boo\ of Rea. Dings-In.Gianni-ree Vattimo - forthcoming - Rivista di Estetica.
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  20. Cavendish's Aesthetic Realism.Daniel Whiting - forthcoming - Philosophers' Imprint.
    In this paper, I offer a new interpretation of Margaret Cavendish’s remarks on beauty. According to it, Cavendish takes beauty to be a real, response-independent quality of objects. In this sense, Cavendish is an aesthetic realist. This position, which remains constant throughout her philosophical writings, contrasts with the non-realist views that were soon after to dominate philosophical reflections on matters of taste in the early modern period. It also, I argue, contrasts with the realism of Cavendish’s contemporary, Henry More. While (...)
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  21. Not Circular: Hume's "Of the Standard of Taste".Mark Windsor - forthcoming - Hume Studies.
    One of the gravest charges that has been brought against Hume’s essay “Of the Standard of Taste” is that of circularity. Hume is accused of defining good art in terms of “true judges,” and of defining true judges in terms of their ability to judge good art. First, I argue that Hume avoids circularity since he offers a way of identifying good art that is logically independent of the verdict of true judges. Second, I argue that this clarifies an enduring (...)
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  22. Merely Methodological Naturalism in Aesthetics: A Proposed Revision of Zuckert’s Herder Interpretation.Naomi Fisher - 2022 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 80 (2):224-228.
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  23. The Inauguration of Formalism: Aestheticism and the Productive Opacity Principle.Michalle Gal - 2022 - Journal of Comparative Literature and Aesthetics 2 (24):20-30.
    This essay presents the Aestheticism of the 19th century as the foundational movement of modernist-formalist aesthetics of the 20th century. The main principle of this movement is what I denominate “productive opacity”. Aestheticism has not been recognized as a philosophical aesthetic theory. However, its definition of artwork as an exclusive kind of form—a deep, opaque form—is among the most precise ever given in the discipline. This essay offers an interpretation of aestheticism as a formalist theory, referred to here as “deep (...)
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  24. Aesthetic Taste: Perceptual Discernment or Emotional Sensibility?Irene Martínez Marín & Elisabeth Schellekens - 2022 - In Dan Zeman and Julia Zakkou Jeremy Wyatt (ed.), Perspectives on Taste: Aesthetics, Language, Metaphysics, and Experimental Philosophy. Routledge.
    Two common strategies have dominated attempts to account for the nature of taste. On the one side, we have an affectivist understanding of taste where aesthetic attribution has to do with the expression of a subjective response. On the other side, we find a non-affectivist approach according to which to judge something aesthetically is to epistemically track its main aesthetic properties. Our main argument will show that neither emotion nor perception can explain the nature of aesthetic taste single-handedly. In this (...)
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  25. Interpreting Art.Sam Rose - 2022 - London, UK: University College London Press.
    (Fully open access book, free to download at the UCL press site) -/- How do people make sense of works of art? And how do they write to make others see the same way? There are many guides to looking at art, histories of art history and art criticism, and accounts of various ‘theories’ and ‘methods’, but this book offers something very unlike the normal search for difference and division: it examines the general and largely unspoken norms shared by interpreters (...)
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  26. Supplementing Herder’s Naturalism: Expanding the Senses and Transcending Cultures.Jonathan M. Weinberg - 2022 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 80 (2):234-238.
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  27. Attention and the Free Play of the Faculties.Jessica J. Williams - 2022 - Kantian Review 27 (1):43-59.
    The harmonious free play of the imagination and understanding is at the heart of Kant’s account of beauty in the Critique of the Power of Judgement, but interpreters have long struggled to determine what Kant means when he claims the faculties are in a state of free play. In this article, I develop an interpretation of the free play of the faculties in terms of the freedom of attention. By appealing to the different way that we attend to objects in (...)
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  28. Author’s Reply for Herder’s Naturalistic Aesthetics.Rachel Zuckert - 2022 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 80 (2):244-247.
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  29. Deleuze’s The Logic of Sense - Irfan Ajvazi.Irfan Ajvazi - 2021 - Idea Books.
    Deleuze’s The Logic of Sense- Irfan Ajvazi.
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  30. André Malraux et l’Art : Une Révolution Intellectuelle.Derek Allan - 2021 - New York, NY, USA: Peter Lang.
    Cette étude présente une explication systématique des éléments clés de la théorie de l’art d’André Malraux. Se basant sur des œuvres telles que Les Voix du silence, Le Surnaturel, L’Irréel et L’Intemporel, elle aborde des sujets cruciaux comme la nature de la création artistique, la psychologie de notre réaction à l’art, la naissance de la notion d’« art » et sa transformation après Manet, la naissance et la mort de l’idée de beauté, la question cruellement négligée de la relation entre (...)
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  31. Peter Lamarque.Filippo Contesi - 2021 - In Alessandro Giovannelli (ed.), Aesthetics: The Key Thinkers. Bloomsbury. pp. 301–308.
    Peter Vaudreuil Lamarque is one of the most prominent members of the golden generation of analytic aestheticians born immediately after the Second World War. If, to follow Archilochus via Isaiah Berlin (via Peter Kivy), “a fox knows many things, but a hedgehog one important thing,” Lamarque is perhaps the biggest hedgehog of his generation. Lamarque’s “important thing” is not a single idea but, as he would put it, the practice that we call “literature.” His distinctive achievement has been to integrate (...)
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  32. M. Norton Wise. Aesthetics, Industry, and Science: Hermann von Helmholtz and the Berlin Physical Society. 432 Pp., Figs., Bibl., Index. Chicago/London: University of Chicago Press, 2018. $45 (Cloth); ISBN 9780226531359. E-Book Available. [REVIEW]Angela N. H. Creager - 2021 - Isis 112 (1):202-203.
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  33. Poetry and the Possibility of Paraphrase.Gregory Currie & Jacopo Frascaroli - 2021 - The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 79 (4):428-439.
    Why is there a long-standing debate about paraphrase in poetry? Everyone agrees that paraphrase can be useful; everyone agrees that paraphrase is no substitute for the poem itself. What is there to disagree about? Perhaps this: whether paraphrase can specify everything that counts as a contribution to the meaning of a poem. There are, we say, two ways to take the question; on one way of taking it, the answer is that paraphrase cannot. Does this entail that there is meaning (...)
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  34. Turner as a Daoist Sage.Jason Dockstader - 2021 - Journal of Aesthetics and Phenomenology 7 (2):113-127.
    In this paper, I provide a cross-cultural comparison between the life and work of the English land- and seascape painter, J.M.W. Turner, and the conception of aesthetic experience and artisanship f...
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  35. In Defense of Forsey’s Aesthetics of Design.Monika Favara-Kurkowski - 2021 - Avant: Trends in Interdisciplinary Studies 12 (3):1-10.
    In philosophical aesthetics, discussions on design objects place the notion of Functional Beauty at the fore. Such a philosophical approach can be found in Jane Forsey’s book The Aesthetics of Design that focuses on the notion of function to promote the aesthetic value of design and develops an interpretation of Kantian Dependent Beauty around it. Lucía Jiménez Sánchez has recently put forward several flaws of Functional Beauty accounts. She presented several practical cases as evidence for the narrowness of Functional Beauty (...)
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  36. Kierkegaard, Mimesis, and Modernity: A Study of Imitation, Existence, and Affect.Wojciech Kaftanski - 2021 - Routledge.
    This book challenges the widespread view of Kierkegaard’s idiosyncratic and predominantly religious position on mimesis. -/- Taking mimesis as a crucial conceptual point of reference in reading Kierkegaard, this book offers a nuanced understanding of the relation between aesthetics and religion in his thought. Kaftanski shows how Kierkegaard's dialectical-existential reading of mimesis interlaces aesthetic and religious themes, including the familiar core concepts of imitation, repetition, and admiration as well as the newly arisen notions of affectivity, contagion, and crowd behavior. Kierkegaard’s (...)
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  37. Schiller on Freedom and Aesthetic Value: Part II.Samantha Matherne & Nick Riggle - 2021 - British Journal of Aesthetics 61 (1):17-40.
    In his Letters on the Aesthetic Education of Man, Friedrich Schiller draws a striking connection between aesthetic value and individual and political freedom, claiming that, ‘it is only through beauty that man makes his way to freedom’. However, contemporary ways of thinking about freedom and aesthetic value make it difficult to see what the connection could be. Through a careful reconstruction of the Letters, we argue that Schiller’s theory of aesthetic value serves as the key to understanding not only his (...)
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  38. What Makes Kant an Aesthetic Cognitivist About Fine Art? A Response to Young.Aviv Reiter - 2021 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 79 (1):108-111.
  39. Political Aesthetics: Addison and Shaftesbury on Taste, Morals and Society. [REVIEW]Endre Szécsényi - 2021 - British Journal of Aesthetics 61 (4):602-605.
    A review of Karl Axelsson's "Political Aesthetics" (Bloomsbury Academic. 2019).
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  40. The Stubbornness of Nature in Art: A Reading of §§556, 558 and 560 of Hegel's Encyclopedia.Ioannis Trisokkas - 2021 - In Joshua Wretzel & Sebastian Stein (eds.), Hegel’s Encyclopedia of the Philosophical Sciences: A Critical Guide. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 232-250.
    Speight has recently raised the question, which he himself leaves unanswered, how naturalism relates to spirit in Hegel’s philosophy of art. ‘Naturalism’ denotes an explanation that invokes aspects of nature that are (allegedly) irreducible or resistant to thought. I call nature ‘stubborn’ insofar as it evinces resistance to its being formed by thought and hence to its being united with it. This paper argues that §§556, 558 and 560 of Hegel’s Encyclopedia answer Speight’s question by specifying three elements of nature (...)
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  41. Jealousy and the Sense of Self: Unamuno and the Contemporary Philosophy of Emotion.Íngrid Vendrell-Ferran - 2021 - Philosophy and Literature 45 (2):295 - 314.
    This paper explores jealousy in Unamuno’s drama El otro. Drawing on contemporary philosophy of emotion, I will argue that for the Spanish author jealousy gives the subject a sense of self. The paper begins by embedding Unamuno’s philosophical anthropology in the context of contemporary emotion theory. It then presents the drama as an investigation into the affective dimension of self-identity. The third section offers an analysis of jealousy as an emotion of self-assessment. The final section discusses how this drama can (...)
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  42. ‘That They Point Is All There Is to It’: Wittgenstein’s Romanticist Aesthetics.Clinton P. Verdonschot - 2021 - Estetika 58 (1):72–88.
    Why is aesthetics important to Wittgenstein? What, according to him, is the function of the aesthetic? My answer consists of three parts: first, I argue that Wittgenstein finds himself in an aporia of normative consciousness – that is to say, a problem with regard to our awareness of the world in terms of its relation to a norm. Second, I argue that the function of Wittgenstein’s aesthetic writings is to deal with this aporia. Third, through a comparison with Friedrich Schlegel’s (...)
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  43. Wittgenstein, Loos, and the Critique of Ornament.Andreas Vrahimis - 2021 - Estetika: The Central European Journal of Aestetics 58 (2):144–159.
    Adolf Loos is one of the few figures that Wittgenstein explicitly named as an influence on his thought. Loos’s influence has been debated in the context of determining Wittgenstein’s relation to modernism, as well as in attempts to come to terms with his work as an architect. This paper looks in a different direction, examining a remark in which Wittgenstein responded to Heidegger’s notorious pronouncement that ‘the Nothing noths’ by reference to Loos’s critique of ornamentation. Wittgenstein draws a parallel between (...)
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  44. Kant on Aesthetic Attention.Jessica J. Williams - 2021 - British Journal of Aesthetics 61 (4):421-435.
    In this paper, I examine the role of attention in Kant’s aesthetic theory in the Critique of the Power of Judgment. While broadly Kantian aestheticians have defended the claim that there is a distinct way that we attend to objects in aesthetic experience, Kant himself is not usually acknowledged as offering an account of aesthetic attention. On the basis of Kant’s more general account of attention in other texts and his remarks on attention in the Critique of the Power of (...)
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  45. Kant on Form or Design.James O. Young - 2021 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 79 (1):112-115.
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  46. Ecos de 60: Impossibilidade macroestrutural, possibilidades microestruturais. Com Júlia M. Rebouças.Gustavo Ruiz da Silva & Mariana Slerca - 2020 - Revista Avesso: Pensamento, Memória E Sociedade 1 (1):160-171.
    Entrevista com Júlia Rebouças, curadora, pesquisadora e crítica de arte.
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  47. Dewey After the End of Art.Roberta Dreon - 2020 - Contemporary Pragmatism 17 (2-3):146-169.
    This article explores the significance of Hegel’s aesthetic lectures for Dewey’s approach to the arts. Although over the last two decades some brilliant studies have been published on the “permanent deposit” of Hegel in Dewey’s mature thought, the aesthetic dimension of Dewey’s engagement with Hegel’s heritage has not yet been investigated. This inquiry will be developed on a theoretical level as well as on the basis of a recent discovery: in Dewey’s Correspondence traces have been found of a lecture on (...)
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  48. Aesthetic Normativity in Kant’s Account: A Regulative Model.Serena Feloj - 2020 - Con-Textos Kantianos 1 (12):105-122.
    The notion of normativity has been key to an actualizing reading of the subjective universality that for Kant characterizes the aesthetic judgment. However, in the scholarly literature little discussion is made, somehow unsurprisingly, of what exactly we should understand by normativity when it comes to Kant’s aesthetics. Recent trends show indeed the tendency to take normativity very broadly to the point of nuancing most of its core meaning. Based on how we speak about normativity in aesthetics, we seem indeed to (...)
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  49. Beauty (Mei_, 美) in the _Zhuangzi and Contemporary Theories of Beauty.Peng Feng - 2020 - Journal of Aesthetic Education 54 (2):21.
    Mei in Chinese is normally translated into English as "beauty" or "the beautiful." The nature of mei is not a central theme in Zhuangzi's philosophy; neither is it a concept of particular importance in traditional Chinese aesthetics. The core concepts of Chinese aesthetics, according to historians of Chinese aesthetics, are dao, qi, and xiang, but mei is not one of them.1 In Chinese aesthetic history, we see different points of emphasis in contrast to the prevailing concern with beauty in Western (...)
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  50. Immanuel Kant’s Aesthetics: Beginnings and Ends.David Fenner - 2020 - Con-Textos Kantianos 1 (12):123-142.
    Immanuel Kant and his work occupied a space at the crossroads of several important movements in philosophy. In this essay, I look at two important crossroads in aesthetics. First, the subjective turn in aesthetics, when the focus on aesthetic objects was rebalanced with the focus on the subject’s experience of such objects, the weight shifting from the objective to the subjective. Second, after many years and many theories advancing the view that universality of judgment could be achieved, at least in (...)
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1 — 50 / 2493