The Routledge Companion to Aesthetics (Routledge Philosophy Companions)

The Routledge Companion to Aesthetics (Routledge Philosophy Companions)

Language: English

Pages: 704

ISBN: 0415782872

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

The third edition of the acclaimed Routledge Companion to Aesthetics contains over sixty chapters written by leading international scholars covering all aspects of aesthetics.

This companion opens with an historical overview of aesthetics including entries on Plato, Aristotle, Kant, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Adorno, Benjamin, Foucault, Goodman, and Wollheim. The second part covers the central concepts and theories of aesthetics, including the definitions of art, taste, the value of art, beauty, imagination, fiction, narrative, metaphor and pictorial representation. Part three is devoted to issues and challenges in aesthetics, including art and ethics, art and religion, creativity, environmental aesthetics and feminist aesthetics. The final part addresses the individual arts, including music, photography, film, videogames, literature, theater, dance, architecture and design.

With ten new entries, and revisions and updated suggestions for further reading throughout, The Routledge Companion to Aesthetics is essential for anyone interested in aesthetics, art, literature, and visual studies.

Aesthetics as Phenomenology: The Appearance of Things (Studies in Continental Thought)

Bakhtin Reframed: Interpreting Key Thinkers for the Arts (Contemporary Thinkers Reframed)

The Field of Cultural Production

Aisthesis: Scenes from the Aesthetic Regime of Art

Deleuze and the Diagram: Aesthetic Threads in Visual Organization

Lo grotesco. Su realización en literatura y pintura (La balsa de la Medusa)


















sociology, history, politics, linguistics, psychology and philosophy. Foucault’s writings, though, are punctuated continually with reflections on art, and these are not merely stylistic embellishments; they can be understood quite directly to inform the trajectory of his philosophical development. Perhaps one of the most reliable summations of Foucault’s general outlook comes from Foucault himself, in a pseudonymously authored entry for a philosophical dictionary that he wrote under the name of

characters must be spoudaioi (serious, superior) people (Poetics 1448a2, 1454a17). These characters’ dignity and standing ensure the importance of what they undertake and undergo. Seriousness also means that the action in a tragedy must possess moral significance. This is not a matter of its having a moral. Some popularizations still speak of tragic flaws and heroes’ falls, but Aristotle has no such thoughts about tragedy. Poetic justice of that type would ruin the tragic pleasure, since if tragic

is left is “existence” – not existence as such, but human existence as it is led in the everyday world of experience; and this is no longer to be “eternally justified” but merely made “bearable” – and made bearable, moreover, “for us.” The idea of eternal justification has no room for “us” in it: no room, that is, for the points of view of intrinsically embodied, intrinsically temporal creatures such as ourselves. Eternal justification could be offered, if at all, only from a standpoint beyond the

mind–body or consciousness–world dichotomies. For Merleau-Ponty, “the theory of the body is already a theory of perception” (ibid.: 203). The philosophical challenge is to give a proper account of this bodily perception. In discussing the meaning of colors he notes: “we must rediscover how to live these colours as our body does, that is as peace or violence in concrete form” (ibid.: 211). Emphasizing that we always experience things in their unity of style and synaesthetic value, he observes that

ContinentalAnalytic Divide, New York: Humanity Books. (An excellent range of studies showing Merleau-Ponty’s relevance to issues in analytic and continental philosophy and cognitive science.) Kaelin, E. (1962) An Existentialist Aesthetic: The Theories of Sartre and Merleau-Ponty, Madison: University of Wisconsin Press. (A useful comparison of Sartre’s and Merleau-Ponty’s aesthetics.) Merleau-Ponty, M. (1964) The Primacy of Perception and Other Essays, ed. J. Edie, Evanston, IL: Northwestern

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