Kaufman on art, family resemblances, and Wittgenstein

British Journal of Aesthetics 48 (1):86-88 (2008)
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Kaufman describes the current debate on the possibility of a definition of art between the theorists and the anti-theorist Wittgensteinians. The Wittgensteinian reliance on ‘family resemblances’ is a serious objection to theoretical definitions. Wittgenstein, however, is said to be unable to give a proper account of the ‘inner experience’ encountered in art. By way of response, it is urged that attention to Wittgenstein himself will show that there are misunderstandings of the idea of family resemblances and that Wittgenstein's writings provide all we need to understand the depth of ‘inner experience’.



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