The Life and Death of Images by Diarmuid CostelloThe Life and Death of Images by Diarmuid Costello

The Life and Death of Images

EditorDiarmuid Costello, Dominic Willsdon

Paperback | April 10, 2008

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During the 1970s and 1980s the discourse surrounding aesthetics largely disappeared from the study of art history, theory, and cultural studies. Claims for the aesthetic value of artworks were thought elitist and politically regressive. The 1990s witnessed a return to aesthetics, but one that stressed the independent claims of beauty in reaction to its perceived suppression by ethical and political imperatives. Beauty, however, is just one aspect of the aesthetic. In recent years, increasing attention has been paid to the ways in which aesthetics and ethics are intertwined. In The Life and Death of Images some of the world's leading cultural thinkers engage in dialogue with one another concerning this "new" aesthetics. In provocative and accessible fashion, they demonstrate its relevance to a range of disciplines including analytic and continental philosophy, art history, theory and practice, cultural history and visual culture, rhetoric and comparative literature. While the focus is primarily on artworks, contributors also consider other forms of imagery that raise questions about the boundaries between art and non-art, about beauty, and about the ethics of aesthetics.
Title:The Life and Death of ImagesFormat:PaperbackDimensions:256 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.27 inPublished:April 10, 2008Publisher:Cornell University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0801474558

ISBN - 13:9780801474552

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Editorial Reviews

"The Life and Death of Images is a well-conceived intervention in one of the principal impasses in contemporary theories of the image: the question, broadly put, of what comes after the opposition of the aesthetic and the anti-aesthetic. For almost three decades now, that question has been surfacing in various forms-as institutional critique, as relational aesthetics, as a return to beauty-but almost no interesting work has been done on the underlying issues. Costello and Willsdon conceive the problem in terms of aesthetics and ethics, and they enlist a number of the foremost writers in and around images in a series of exchanges. The format is innovative, and generates the kind of real interdisciplinary friction that is so often missing from ordinary edited volumes. The book's insights and hopes are an accurate reflection of the state of conceptualization of the image."—James Elkins, School of the Art Institute of Chicago