Art and Embodiment: From Aesthetics to Self-Consciousness

Paperback | April 15, 2001

byPaul Crowther

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In his Critical Aesthetics and Postmodernism (Clarendon Press, 1993) Paul Crowther argued that art and aesthetic experiences have the capacity to humanize. In Art and Embodiment he develops this theme in much greater depth, arguing that art can bridge the gap between philosophy's traditionalstriving for generality and completeness, and the concreteness and contingency of humanity's basic relation to the world. As the key element in his theory, he proposes an ecological definition of art. His strategy involves first mapping out and analysing the logical boundaries and ontological structures of the aesthetic domain. He then considers key concepts from this analysis in the light of a tradition in Continental philosophy (notably the work of Kant, Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty, and Hegel)which -- by virtue of the philosophical significance that it assigns to art -- significantly anticipates the ecological conception.On this basis Professor Crowther is able to give a full formulation of his ecological definition. Art, in making sensible or imaginative material into symbolic form, harmonizes and conserves what is unique and what is general in human experience. The aesthetic domain answers basic needs intrinsic toself-consciousness itself, and art is the highest realization of such needs. In the creation and reception of art the embodied subject is fully at home with his or her environment.

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In his Critical Aesthetics and Postmodernism (Clarendon Press, 1993) Paul Crowther argued that art and aesthetic experiences have the capacity to humanize. In Art and Embodiment he develops this theme in much greater depth, arguing that art can bridge the gap between philosophy's traditionalstriving for generality and completeness, and...

Paul Crowther is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Central Lancashire.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:220 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.55 inPublished:April 15, 2001Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199244979

ISBN - 13:9780199244973

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Table of Contents

Introduction: An Ecological Theory of ArtPart One: Varieties and Structures of Aesthetic Experience1. Aesthetic Domain: A Logical Geography2. Aesthetic Experience and the Experience of Art3. Alienation and Disalienation in Abstract ArtPart Two: The Philosophical Significance of Art4. Fundamental Ontology and Transcendent Beauty: An Approach to Kant's Aesthetics5. Heidegger and the Question of Aesthetics6. Merleau-Ponty: Vision and Painting7. Art, Architecture, and Self-Consciousness: An Exploration of Hegel's AestheticsPart Three: The Ecological Significance of Art8. The Needs of Self-Consciousness: From Aesthetic Experience to Unalienated Artifice9. Art and the Needs of Self-Consciousness10. Defining Art: Questions of Creativity and OriginalityAppendixConclusionIndex