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Philosophy: aesthetics

See below for a selection of the latest books from Philosophy: aesthetics category. Presented with a red border are the Philosophy: aesthetics books that have been lovingly read and reviewed by the experts at Lovereading. With expert reading recommendations made by people with a passion for books and some unique features Lovereading will help you find great Philosophy: aesthetics books and those from many more genres to read that will keep you inspired and entertained. And it's all free!

The Egalitarian Sublime A Process Philosophy

The Egalitarian Sublime A Process Philosophy

Author: James (Deakin University Australia) Williams Format: Hardback Release Date: 31/08/2019

Maps the history of the sublime to reveal its dark heart and creates a new, anarchic approach We call 'sublime' those things and experiences supposed to be the very best. But what if the best encourages the worst? What if the best leads to inequality and exploitation? Williams critiques the sublime over its long history and in recent returns to sublime nature and technologies. Deploying a new critical method that draws on process philosophy, he shows how the sublime has always led to inequality. This holds true even where it underpins ideas of cosmopolitan enlightenment, and even when refined by Burke, Kant, Nietzsche, Schopenhauer and Zizek. Against the unjust legacies of the traditional sublime, James Williams defends a new, anarchist sublime: multiple, self-destructive and temporary; opposed to any idea of highest value to be shared by all but always imposed on the powerless.

The New Aesthetics of Deculturation Neoliberalism, Fundamentalism and Kitsch

The New Aesthetics of Deculturation Neoliberalism, Fundamentalism and Kitsch

Author: Olivier Roy Format: Hardback Release Date: 22/08/2019

What are the predominant aesthetics of the twenty-first century? Thorsten Botz-Bornstein argues that deculturation, embodied by the conspicuous vulgarity of kitsch, is the overriding visual language of our times. Drawing on the work of Islam scholar Olivier Roy, who argued that religious fundamentalism arises when religion is separated from the indigenous cultural values, Botz-Bornstein shows that the production of `absolute' truths through deculturation also exists in contemporary education. The neoliberal environment has separated learning from culture by emphasizing standardization and quantified learning outcomes. In a globalized environment, the idea of culture is no longer available as a referent; instead we are taught to rely on the culturally neutral term `excellence'. For Botz-Bornstein, this is an absolute value similar to the `truth' of religious fundamentalists. Similarly, kitsch is what happens when aesthetic values are separated from cultural contexts. Kitsch is aesthetic fundamentalism. Kitsch aesthetics are an aesthetics of excellence. The consumption of kitsch can be understood as an intrinsically narcissistic impulse, reinforced by social media, individuals recycling their own selves without being confronted with the culture of the other. The existence of self-centred alternative truths , fake news and conspiracy theories and selfies are linked together in the fundamentalism-neoliberalism-kitsch pattern. Including analysis of the intersections of `cute', `excellent', `sublime', and `interesting' in contemporary aesthetic culture, this is a journey through philosophy, psychology and cultural theory, redefining a new aesthetics of deculturation.

Political Aesthetics Addison and Shaftesbury on Taste, Morals, and Society

Political Aesthetics Addison and Shaftesbury on Taste, Morals, and Society

Author: Karl (Research Fellow at Uppsala University) Axelsson Format: Hardback Release Date: 22/08/2019

Providing a gateway to a new history of modern aesthetics, this book challenges conventional views of how art's significance developed in society. The 18th century is often said to have involved a radical transformation in the concept of art: from the understanding that art is tool for some practical purpose, to the modern belief that it holds a distinctive and intrinsic value. By exploring the ground between these notions of art's function, Karl Axelsson reveals how scholars of culture made taste, morals, and a politically stable society an integral part of their claims about the experience of nature and art. Focusing on the writings advanced by two of the most prolific men of letters in the eighteenth century, Joseph Addison (1672-1719) and the third Earl of Shaftesbury (1671-1713) it contests the conviction that modern aesthetic autonomy was a reorientation in criticism and philosophy originally prompted by these two key figures in the history of aesthetics. By re-examining the political relevance of Addison's and Shaftesbury's theories of taste, Axelsson shows that they were, first and foremost, seeking to fortify a natural link between the aesthetic experience and the consolidation of modern political society.

Irreversible Noise

Irreversible Noise

Author: Inigo (Co-Director, Glass Bead) Wilkins Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 20/08/2019

A detailed critical examination of the concept of noise, its significance in scientific disciplines, and its use and misuse in the humanities and sonic arts. In this wide-ranging inquiry, Inigo Wilkins elaborates the theoretical and practical significance of the concept of noise with regard to current debates concerning realism, materialism, and rationality. Drawing on contemporary scientific thinking, Wilkins develops a multilevel analysis of noise, exploring the associated notions of randomness and unpredictability across different disciplinary contexts. Wilkins articulates noise within a functionalist-computationalist philosophical framework that follows Wilfrid Sellars's inferentialist account of reason through his commentaries on Hume and Kant. Outlining the significance of noise to information theory and cybernetics, its relation to thermodynamics, dynamic systems theory, evolutionary biology, and complexity theory, and to recent theories in cognitive science and AI, he goes on to examine how randomness and noise are pertinent to political economy and contemporary finance. Finally, Wilkins explores noise in its specifically sonic guise, looking in particular at the phenomenology of listening and neurophenomenological models of auditory cognition, and situating the use of noise in experimental and popular music within a deep historical account of its evolutionary development. The central aim of this pioneering critical work is to demystify noise-to counter the neoliberal politics of self-organizing systems and the tendency to fetishize indeterminacy in contemporary art-by showing how constrained randomness is intrinsic to the functional organization of complex hierarchically nested systems, including higher cognition, and how the navigation of noise is a necessary condition of reason and consequently of freedom.

The Aesthetics of Desire and Surprise Phenomenology and Speculation

The Aesthetics of Desire and Surprise Phenomenology and Speculation

Author: Jadranka Skorin-Kapov Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/08/2019

The Aesthetics of Desire and Surprise: Phenomenology and Speculation covers issues central to contemporary continental philosophy (desire, expectations, excess, rupture, transcendence, immanence, surprise). The proposed term desire||surprise captures the phenomenological-speculative character of the pair not yet and no longer. Non-obvious parallels between different thinkers are drawn, and the argumentation is organized around philosophical figures relevant in the sequence desire - excess -pause (rupture, break) - recuperation (surprise). The works of Levinas, Zizek, Bataille, Blanchot, Foucault, and Ricoeur are interpreted and positioned according to the proposed template of desire - excess - pause. The consideration of limit experiences involves authors fascinated by transgression, and the question of whether excess is immanent or transcendent. This discussion considers works by Nietzsche, Deleuze, Zizek, and Foucault. The analysis of surprise and the beginning of recovery after the pause considers works by Fink, Merleau-Ponty, Nancy, Lyotard, Dufrenne, Bachelard, and Seel. The provocative argument elaborated in this work is that surprise starts with indifference. Furthermore, the argument is that surprise begins where the concept reaches its ending, hence that the limit of speculative thinking at its ending is the limit of aesthetics at its beginning. The work of Hegel, Schelling and Jaspers are discussed in order to argue for the beginning of aesthetics there where knowledge ends. Philosophical thematic is contextualized via sections on artists such as Duchamp and Mondrian, and on some films, provoking interest of aestheticians working in art history and cultural studies departments.

Against Transmission Media Philosophy and the Engineering of Time

Against Transmission Media Philosophy and the Engineering of Time

Author: Timothy Barker Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 25/07/2019

In Against Transmission Barker rethinks the history of audio-visual media as a history of analytical instruments. Rather than viewing media history as the commonly told story of synthetic media (media that make a new whole from connecting separate parts), by focusing on the analytical function of mediation Against Transmission is able to focus on the way that media that have historically been used to count, measure and analyse experience still continue to provide the condition for contemporary life. By studying the engineering of transmission, transduction and storage through the prism of process philosophy, the book interrogates how the understanding of media-as-machine may offer new ways to describe a particular phenomenological relationship to the world, asking: what can the hardware of machines that segment information into very small elements tell us about experiences of time, memory and history? This book investigates the technical architecture of media such as television, computers, cameras, and cinematography. It achieves this through in-depth archive research into the history of the development of media technology, including innovative readings of key concepts from philosophers of media such as Harold A. Innis, Marshall McLuhan, Friedrich Kittler, Siegfried Zielinski and Wolfgang Ernst. Teaming philosophical inquiry with thorough technical and historical analysis, in a broad range of international case studies, from early experimental cinema and television to contemporary media art and innovative hardware developments, Barker shows how the technical discoveries made in these contexts have engineered the experiences of time in contemporary media culture.

Sound Pressure How Speaker Systems Influence, Manipulate and Torture

Sound Pressure How Speaker Systems Influence, Manipulate and Torture

Author: Toby Heys Format: Hardback Release Date: 16/07/2019

Sound Pressure reveals how speaker systems mounted in public, employment, military and entertainment environments have played a pivotal role in the way that humans have been physiologically and psychologically organised and disciplined throughout the past century. The networked Wired Radio speakers of the 1920's industrialised factory, acoustically anchor a narrative based on the functional utilisation of sound systems for insidious purposes; from the surround-sound techniques of the Waco siege, to the application of sonic torture in Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib. Crucially, Sound Pressure identifies the logic behind the miniaturisation and disappearance of visible sound system technologies as they transmute into the ultrasonic dynamics of the Hypersonic Sound System and covert bone conduction techniques of Whispering Windows. The book charts an evolution of speaker technology that has been, and will be, used to influence, manipulate and torture the collective and isolated body. It amplifies the connections between LRADs, iPods, Mosquitos, Intonarumori, loudhailers, and Sequential Arc Discharge Acoustic Generators - the meta-network of speaker systems through which rhythms and cadences of power are transmitted, connected, and modulated.

Aesthetic Realism

Aesthetic Realism

Author: Ines Morais Format: Hardback Release Date: 16/07/2019

This compelling book defends realism concerning the aesthetic-in particular, concerning the aesthetic properties of works of art (including works of literature). Morais lucidly argues that art criticism, when referring to aesthetic properties, is referring not ultimately to the critic's subjective reactions, but to genuine properties of the works. With a focus on contemporary discussion conducted in the analytic tradition, as well as on arguments by Hume and Kant, this book characterizes the debate in aesthetics and the philosophy of art concerning aesthetic realism, examining attacks on the objectivity of values, the `autonomy thesis', and Hume's sentimentalism. Considering and defusing scepticism concerning the significance of the ontological debate about aesthetic realism, Morais discusses two powerful attacks on aesthetic realism before defending the doctrine against them and providing a positive realist account of aesthetic properties.

Eros Ideologies Writings on Art, Spirituality, and the Decolonial

Eros Ideologies Writings on Art, Spirituality, and the Decolonial

Author: Laura E. Perez Format: Hardback Release Date: 12/07/2019

In Eros Ideologies Laura E. Perez explores the decolonial through Western and non-Western thought concerning personal and social well-being. Drawing upon Jungian, people of color, and spiritual psychology, alongside non-Western spiritual philosophies of the interdependence of all life-forms, she writes of the decolonial as an ongoing project rooted in love as an ideology to frame respectful coexistence of social and cultural diversity. In readings of art that includes self-portraits by Frida Kahlo, Ana Mendieta, and Yreina D. Cervantez, the drawings and paintings of Chilean American artist Liliana Wilson, and Favianna Rodriguez's screen-printed images, Perez identifies art as one of the most valuable laboratories for creating, imagining, and experiencing new forms of decolonial thought. Such art expresses what Perez calls eros ideologies: understandings of social and natural reality that foreground the centrality of respect and care of self and others as the basis for a more democratic and responsible present and future. Employing a range of writing styles and voices-from the poetic to the scholarly-Perez shows how art can point to more just and loving ways of being.

Eros Ideologies Writings on Art, Spirituality, and the Decolonial

Eros Ideologies Writings on Art, Spirituality, and the Decolonial

Author: Laura E. Perez Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 12/07/2019

In Eros Ideologies Laura E. Perez explores the decolonial through Western and non-Western thought concerning personal and social well-being. Drawing upon Jungian, people of color, and spiritual psychology, alongside non-Western spiritual philosophies of the interdependence of all life-forms, she writes of the decolonial as an ongoing project rooted in love as an ideology to frame respectful coexistence of social and cultural diversity. In readings of art that includes self-portraits by Frida Kahlo, Ana Mendieta, and Yreina D. Cervantez, the drawings and paintings of Chilean American artist Liliana Wilson, and Favianna Rodriguez's screen-printed images, Perez identifies art as one of the most valuable laboratories for creating, imagining, and experiencing new forms of decolonial thought. Such art expresses what Perez calls eros ideologies: understandings of social and natural reality that foreground the centrality of respect and care of self and others as the basis for a more democratic and responsible present and future. Employing a range of writing styles and voices-from the poetic to the scholarly-Perez shows how art can point to more just and loving ways of being.

On Music, Value and Utopia Nostalgia for an Age Yet to Come?

On Music, Value and Utopia Nostalgia for an Age Yet to Come?

Author: Stan Erraught Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/07/2019

Adorno's writings are often the starting point for the teaching of popular music studies, usually passing swiftly on, after concluding that `he didn't listen to the right jazz' or `he was a snob'. In this book, using Adorno's aesthetic theory more generally, a viable philosophical approach to the study of idiomatic, non- standard music is constructed. The links between Adorno's work and its Kantian roots are explored, and a more general and inclusive aesthetic constructed, using the utopian and implicitly political elements in each. This book will be of interest to critical theorists and musicologists wishing to build a more engaged practice without the pitfalls of a by now outdated `postmodern' turn.

Distributions of the Sensible Ranciere, between Aesthetics and Politics

Distributions of the Sensible Ranciere, between Aesthetics and Politics

Author: Scott Durham, Dilip Gaonkar, Benjamin Arditi, Nico Baumbach Format: Hardback Release Date: 30/06/2019

Jacques Ranciere's work is increasingly central to several debates across the humanities. Distributions of the Sensible confronts a question at the heart of his thought: How should we conceive the relationship between the politics of aesthetics and the aesthetics of politics ? Specifically, the book explores the implications of Ranciere's rethinking of the relationship of aesthetic to political democracy from a wide range of critical perspectives. Distributions of the Sensible contains original essays by leading scholars on topics such as Ranciere's relation to political theory, critical theory, philosophical aesthetics, and film. The book concludes with a new essay by Ranciere himself that reconsiders the practice of theory between aesthetics and politics.