In the Critique of Judgment, Kant presents what is possibly the most powerful aesthetic theory ever devised. It is not the clearest, and even when it comes clear, it is only after much toil. But its contradictions and complexities — apparent or real — reflect and disclose to great depth the very complexities and paradoxes that infect our artistic and aesthetic lives. Later aestheticians have with greater sophistication directed attention to the social and historical aspects of institutionalised fine arts, but in terms of providing philosophic provocations to take us deep into the centres of aesthetic experience, the Critique of Judgment is unmatched — the most important work of aesthetic theory since Aristotle’s Poetics. In the minds of many of us, its supremacy in aesthetics remains unchallenged today
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