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Kant

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Lauren Fulton

on 24 September 2013

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Transcript of Kant

Relating to art:
1 - "The content that is to come into artistic representation should be in itself qualified for such representation"
2 - "Requires of the content of art that it be not anything abstract in itself, but concrete"
3 - "If a sensuous form and shape is to correspond with a genuine and therefore concrete content, it must likewise be something individual, in itself completely concrete and single"
Aesthetics
Immanuel Kant
G.W.F. Hegel
Trained in philosophy; turned to economics & politics early on
Young Hegelians
Historical materialism
Modes of production > class struggle > communism
Institutions of capitalism structure our future behavior
Religion is the "opiate of the people"
After Kant & Hegel ...
Discussion
What role does paradox play in Kant's definitions of beauty?
Karl Marx
First Moment of the Judgment of Taste: Moment of Quality
Subjective
Disinterested (purity)
Second Moment of the Judgement of Taste: Moment of Quantity
Subjective universality (ought to be) of beauty (not founded on a concept)
"Good" - founded on a concept
With the agreeable, everyone has own taste
Taste of sense
Taste of reflection
Third Moment of Judgements of Taste: Moment of the Relation of Ends Brought Under Review
Finality

Fourth Moment of the Judgement of Taste: Moment of the Modality of Delight in the Object
Universality/Conditionality
(i) The Idea of the Beauty of Art or the Ideal
Contribution to the Critique of Hegel's 'Philosophy of Right'
Family
Contribution to the Critique of Hegel's 'Philosophy of Right'
Proto-Marxism
(ii) The Particular Forms of the Beauty of Art

(1) SYMBOLIC ART
“[T]he Idea has not found the form even in itself and therefore remains struggling and striving after it.”


(2) CLASSICAL ART
“The classical art-form is the free and adequate embodiment of the Ideal in the shape peculiarly appropriate to the Idea itself in its essential nature”


(3) ROMANTIC ART
"For Spirit is the infinite subjectivity of Idea, which as absolute inwardness cannot freely and truly shape itself outwardly on condition of remaining moulded into a bodily existence as the one appropriate to it."
TASTE
Clive Bell: Aesthetic Hypothesis (1914)
Aesthetic Emotion
"The starting-point for all systems of aesthetics must be the personal experience of a peculiar emotion. The objects that provoke this emotion we call works of art; this emotion is called the aesthetic emotion. All works of visual art have some common quality, or when we speak of ‘works of art’ we gibber. There must be some one quality without which a work of art cannot exist, which is significant form. In each, lines and colours combined in a particular way, certain forms and relations of forms, stir our aesthetic emotions. [...]
I have no right to consider anything a work of art to which I cannot react emotionally; and I have no right to look for the essential quality in anything that I have not felt to be a work of art. All systems of aesthetics must be based on personal experience-that is to say, they must be subjective."
"Art, then, is an expression and a stimulus of the imaginative life, which is separated from actual life by the absence of responsive action. Now this responsive action implies in actual life moral responsibility. In art we have no such moral responsibility – it presents a life freed from the binding necessities of our actual existence... Morality appreciates emotion by the standard of resultant action, art appreciates emotion in and for itself."
Roger Fry: Essay in Aesthetics (1909)
Imaginative Life
Clement Greenberg: Avant-Garde and Kitsch & The Modernist Painting (1939 & 1961)
Model of artistic progression from representation towards abstraction
"It appears to me that it is necessary to examine more closely and with more originality than hitherto the relationship between aesthetic experience as met by the specific -- not the generalized -- individual, and the social and historical contexts in which that experience takes place. "
Idea = Form
Three Critiques:
-Critique of Pure Reason
-Critique of Practical Reason
-Critique of the Power of Judgement

The Critique of Judgement:
Aesthetic judgement (Beauty)
theoretical knowledge - how things are
morality - how things ought to be
Teleological judgement
Idea > Form
Idea < Form
Kitsch
"And I cannot insist enough that Modernism has never meant, and does not mean now, anything like a break with the past. It may mean a devolution, an unraveling, of tradition, but it also means its further evolution. Modernist art continues the past without gap or break, and wherever it may end up it will never cease being intelligible in terms of the past."
"Beauty is the form of finality in an object, so far as perceived in it apart from the representation of an end"
Idea/Ideal
Imagination and the normal idea
Theodor Adorno, "Aesthetic Theory" (1969)
Non-western: Indian, Chinese, African, etc
Beyond Kant...
Beauty and the ideal
Common sense
What is the origin of making judgements of taste?
"The beautiful is that which, apart from a concept, is cognized as object of a necessary delight..."
Formal Autonomy
Art History as Unfolding Narrative
Universality
How useful are the Kantian theories in the contemporary context?
Introduction by Robert C. Tucker
'Turning Hegel on his head'
Humankind, God, self-alienation, and self-realization
History of spirit, history of production
Civil Society
State
(not the other way around)
Criticizes Hegel for confusing the abstract for the real
Alienation and confusion of state's true purpose
How are Marx's criticisms of Hegel useful in thinking about aesthetics?
The Idea as reality + Concept of idea = the Ideal
Any content can be represented, judged, and be denied the artistic beauty of the Ideal
Defectiveness of art not necessarily due to lack of skill > defectiveness of form comes from defectiveness of content
Only in highest art: content expressed by shape = true content
How did Hegel's theory revolutionize conceptions of aesthetics?
Part of era of German idealism, after Kant
"Logical" starting point
More religiously driven conception of philosophy (which Kant was opposed to)
Teleological account of history (later used by Marx)
"The beautiful is that which, apart from a concept, pleases universally"
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