But before proceeding one must understand what aesthetic pleasure is.

In this respect the sense of ‘aesthetic’ is loosely synonymous with that of ‘artistic’.

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Lao-tzu, the legendary founder of Taoism, was even more puritanical. He condemned all art as a blinding of the eye,a deafening of the ear, and a cloying of the palate. Later Taoists were more lenient, however,encouraging a freer, more intuitive approach both to works of art and tonature. The philosophy of beautypresented in their works and in the writings of the (Zen) Buddhists who succeeded them is seldom articulate, being confined toepigrams and short commentaries that remain opaque to the uninitiated.

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According to Kant, to say that a pleasure is interested is not tosay that it is self-interested in the Hobbesian sense, but rather thatit stands in a certain relation to the faculty of desire. The pleasureinvolved in judging an action to be morally good is interested becausesuch a judgment issues in a desire to bring the action into existence,i.e., to perform it. To judge an action to be morally good is to becomeaware that one has a duty to perform the action, and to become so awareis to gain a desire to perform it. By contrast, the pleasure involvedin judging an object to be beautiful is disinterested because such ajudgment issues in no desire to do anything in particular. If we can besaid to have a duty with regard to beautiful things, it appears to beexhausted in our judging them aesthetically to be beautiful. That iswhat Kant means when he says that the judgment of taste is notpractical but rather “merely contemplative” (Kant 1790,95).

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It is unclear to what degree Sibley, beyond seeking to establishthat the application of aesthetic concepts is not condition-governed,seeks also to define the term ‘aesthetic’ in terms of theirnot being so. It is clearer, perhaps, that he does not succeed indefining the term this way, whatever his intentions. Aesthetic conceptsare not alone in being non-condition-governed, as Sibley himselfrecognizes in comparing them with color concepts. But there is also noreason to think them alone in being non-condition-governed while alsobeing reason-supportable, since moral concepts, to give one example, atleast arguably also have both these features. Isolating the aestheticrequires something more than immediacy, as Kant saw. It requiressomething like the Kantian notion of disinterest, or at least somethingto play the role played by that notion in Kant’s theory.

What makes music distinct is the quality that differentiates it from other types of art....


Jane Cauvel (Author of Four Essays on Aesthetics)

The Aesthetic Movement and Art Nouveau, whose roots were in the reaction to the Industrial Revolution in England in the middle of the 19th century, are the two major stylistic developments of this Movement’s philosophy (A Thing of Beauty 9).

Aesthetics in School Practice A study of four ..

Starting from the Hegelian conception of language and of the aesthetic experience, I shall argue that literary, and more specifically poetic, discourse can be defined as the verbal completion of an aesthetic experience, and that this distinctive feature marks off literary discourse from other types of discourse such as scientific and philosophical discourse....

Four Dissertations is a collection of four essays by the ..

Expectations are grounded in a student's self-understanding and in knowledge about the college or university at which he or she plans to spend the next four years or more.” This superior justification of what a college student foresees by Robert Gonyea, really depicts what a scholar looks forward to in his o...

Four Essays On Aestheticstoward A Global Perspective …

There is no denying that when we attempt to describe, in any detail,the values of experiences afforded by particular works we quickly findourselves describing the works themselves. The question is what to makeof this fact. If one is antecedently committed to empiricism, it mayseem a manifestation of the appropriately intimate connection betweenthe aesthetic character of a work and the value of the experience thatthe work affords. But if one is not so committed, it may seem tomanifest something else. If, when attempting to account for theaesthetic value of Bartok’s Fourth String Quartet in terms of thevalue of the experience it affords, we find ourselves unable to saymuch about the value of that experience without saying something aboutthe quartet’s “particular turns and twists,” this maybe because the value resides in those twists and turns and not in theexperience of them. To affirm such a possibility, of course, is not todeny that the value the quartet has in virtue of its particular twistsin turns is a value that we experience it as having. It is rather toinsist on sharply distinguishing between the value of experience andthe experience of value, in something like the way Dickie insisted onsharply distinguishing between the unity of experience and theexperience of unity. When the empiricist maintains that that value ofBartok’s Fourth String Quartet, with its particular twists andturns, consists in the value of the experience that it affords, whichexperience is valuable, at least in part, because it is an experienceof a quartet with those twists and turns, one may wonder whether avalue originally belonging to the quartet has been transferred to theexperience, before being reflected back, once again, onto thequartet.