Non-Branching Moderate Moralism

Philosophia 42 (1):95-111 (2014)
W. Clifton
Miami University, Ohio
Noël Carroll’s (“Moderate Moralism”) conceptual framework includes four positions: radical autonomism, moderate autonomism, moderate moralism, and radical moralism. Alessandro Giovanelli (“The Ethical Criticism of Art: A New Mapping of the Territory”) argues that the radical positions, as Carroll defines them, have no modern day adherents. Therefore, the framework should be adapted such that we can see interestingly new distinctions. On Giovanelli’s new framework Carroll’s account is a moderate autonomist view. In this paper I adopt Giovanelli’s framework and raise a different objection to Carroll’s account. I argue that Carroll’s account possesses a branching structure, since on this account moral and aesthetic criticism are not linearly related. Because of this structure, Carroll’s theory faces a dilemma: it’s either self-undermining or consistent with moderate autonomism, even in his own framework. Drawing on Kendall Walton’s (“Categories of Art”) notion of categories of art, I provide an account that is both non-branching and moderate moralist in Giovanelli’s framework. It’s non-branching because moral criticism bears a linear causal relation to aesthetic criticism
Keywords Aesthetics  Ethics  Moralism  Art and ethics
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DOI 10.1007/s11406-013-9488-4
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References found in this work BETA

Categories of Art.Kendall L. Walton - 1970 - Philosophical Review 79 (3):334-367.
Narrative Discourse.Seymour Chatman & Gerard Genette - 1980 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 39 (2):221-224.

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