10496 Philosophical Aesthetics: An Introduction

Credits: 6 intermediate credits in Philosophy

Prerequisites: none

The course is based on a translation of Philosophical Aesthetics: An Introduction, edited by Oswald Hanfling (Basil Blackwell and The Open University, 1992).

Aesthetics deals with the question of the nature of art (in the broad sense of the word) and with the criteria for its evaluation. The long tradition of aesthetics as a philosophic topic established by the greatest thinkers, who devoted extensive thought to the subject, continues to this day. The course is designed to acquaint the student with the basic concepts of aesthetics and present the variety of problems that the philosophic discourse about art attempts to solve. It aims to present the central philosophic theories put forth concerning aesthetics, address their current relevancy and survey the numerous contemporary trends in aesthetics.

Topics: What is art? The problem of definition (Oswald Hanfling), Aesthetic qualities (Oswald Hanfling), The ontology of art (Oswald Hanfling); Art and feeling Aesthetic experience (Diané Collinson), Art, emotion and expression (Robert Wilkinson); Art, world and society Truth and representation (Rosalind Hursthouse), Art, society and morality (Tom Sorell); Art and value The evaluation of art (Colin Lyas), Criticism and interpretation (Colin Lyas), Structuralism and post-structuralism (Stuart Sim), Marxism and aesthetics (Stuart Sim).