White on White/Black on Black is a unique contribution to the philosophy of race. The text explores how 14 philosophers, 7 white and 7 black, philosophically understand the dynamics of the process of racialization.
Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but it's also in the language we use and everywhere in the world around us. In this elegant, witty, and ultimately profound meditation on what is beautiful, Crispin Sartwell begins with six words from six different cultures - ancient Greek's 'to kalon', the Japanese idea of 'wabi-sabi', Hebrew's 'yapha', the Navajo concept 'hozho', Sanskrit 'sundara', and our own English-language 'beauty'. Each word becomes a door onto another way of thinking about, and (...) looking at, what is beautiful in the world, and in our lives. In Sartwell's hands these six names of beauty - and there could be thousands more - are revealed as simple and profound ideas about our world and our selves. (shrink)
Leni Riefenstahl meets Charlie Chaplin : aesthetics of the Third Reich -- Artphilosophical themes -- Dead Kennedys and Black Flags : artpolitics of punk -- Prehistory of political aesthetics -- Red, gold, black, and green : black nationalist aesthetics -- Arthistorical themes -- Political power and transcendental geometry : Republican classicism in early America.
Preview: /Commentary: Richard Shusterman, Ars Erotica: Sex and Somaesthetics in the Classical Arts of Love, 436 pages./ Richard Shusterman’s work is remarkable, among other things, for extending the range and power of the discipline of aesthetics, conceived by him as fundamental to many dimensions of human experience. Indeed, he has driven aesthetics into entirely new ranges of phenomena and strategies for research, and also perhaps returned to an ancient sense of the centrality of aesthetic concepts such as beauty to virtually (...) every human endeavor. In many ways, I think, Shusterman is fulfilling John Dewey’s vision as expressed in Art as Experience, as well as spelling out in detail the implications of his own early book Pragmatist Aesthetics, exploring the aesthetic dimensions of all sorts of human activities. Schusterman’s somaesthetics, however, takes what we might call the aesthetics, or ordinary experience, and centers it on the body in a way that Dewey could not have foreseen. The book might have been titled The Aesthetics of Sex, and as soon as he broaches the topic it strikes one that this subject has been remarkably neglected within philosophical aesthetics, or even in Western philosophy as a whole. Considered as dimensions or arenas of human experience, the aesthetic and the erotic, as Shusterman shows in replete multi-cultural detail, are bound up entirely and from the origins in many or even all cultures. (shrink)
Perhaps we should entertain the idea that aesthetic properties are no less (but no more) objective than properties like weight or shape. Indeed, the weight and shape of something are themselves aesthetic properties of that thing. And we might speculate or (what the heck) assert that aesthetic properties are no more (but no less) socially constructed than size or material composition, for example. Indeed the size and material composition of something are aesthetic properties of it. We might, that is, live (...) in an aesthetic universe, live embedded in an aesthetic reality. Then, for example, to give a full description of any thing or phenomenon, we would have to resort to aesthetic categories: perhaps there is no natural science, for example, without aesthetics, and vice versa. On a good day, the universe might really, actually, truly be beautiful. (shrink)