An Aesthetic Theory in Four Dimensions

Dialogue and Universalism 29 (2):53-64 (2019)
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Abstract

The purpose of this article is to synthesize four major elements of aesthetic experience that have previously appeared isolated whenever an attempt at conceptualization is made. These four elements are: Immanuel Kant’s disinterested pleasure, Robin G. Collingwood’s emotional expressionism, the present writer’s redemptive emotional experience, and, lastly, Plato’s concept of Beauty. By taking these four abstracted elements as the bedrock for genuine aesthetic experience, this article aims to clarify the proper role of art as distinct from philosophy and intellectualization. Rather than a medium conducive to intellectual understanding, it is argued that the sphere these four elements of aesthetic experience demarcate is one in which art leads to an emotional understanding that transforms the human condition and it imbues it with new meaning only to be found in a moment of aesthetic experience.

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Robert E. Allinson
Soka University

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