Beauty has captured human interest since before Plato, but how, why, and to whom does beauty matter in today's world? Whose standard of beauty motivates African Americans to straighten their hair? What inspires beauty queens to measure up as flawless objects for the male gaze? Why does a French performance artist use cosmetic surgery to remake her face into a composite of the master painters' version of beauty? How does beauty culture perceive the disabled body? Is the constant effort to (...) remain young and thin, often at considerable economic and emotional expense, ethically justifiable? Provocative essays by an international group of scholars discuss beauty in aesthetics, the arts, the tools of fashion, the materials of decoration, and the big business of beautification—beauty matters—to reveal the ways gender, race, and sexual orientation have informed the concept of beauty and driven us to become more beautiful. Here, Kant rubs shoulders with Calvin Klein. Beauty Matters draws from visual art, dance, cultural history, and literary and feminist theory to explore the values and politics of beauty. Various philosophical perspectives on ethics and aesthetics emerge from this penetrating book to determine and reveal that beauty is never disinterested. Foreward by Eleanor Heartney; Introduction by Peg Brand. Authors include Marcia M. Eaton, Noel Carroll, Paul C. Taylor, Arthur C. Danto, Kathleen M. Higgins, Susan Bordo, Dawn Perlmutter, Eva Kit Wah Man, Anita Silvers, Hilary Robinson, Kaori Chino, Sally Banes, and Peg Brand's essay "Bound to Beauty: An Interview with Orlan." (available here). (shrink)
Emphasizing the human body in all of its forms, Beauty Unlimited expands the boundaries of what is meant by beauty both geographically and aesthetically. Peg Zeglin Brand and an international group of contributors interrogate the body and the meaning of physical beauty in this multidisciplinary volume. This striking and provocative book explores the history of bodily beautification; the physicality of socially or culturally determined choices of beautification; the interplay of gender, race, class, age, sexuality, and ethnicity within and on the (...) body; and the aesthetic meaning of the concept of beauty in an increasingly globalized world. Foreward by Carolyn Korsmeyer. Authors include Noel Carroll, Gregory Velazco Y Trianosky, Monique Roelofs, Whitney Davis, Eleanor Heartney, Diana Tietjens Meyers, Phoebe M. Farris, Mary Devereaux, Jo Ellen Jacobs, Karina L. Cespedes-Cortes and Paul C. Taylor, Fedwa Malti-Douglas, Stephen Davies, Jane Duran, Valerie Sullivan Fuchs, Keith Lehrer, Allen Douglas, Cynthia Freeland, Eva Kit Wah Man, Mary Bittner Wiseman, and Peg Brand's essay, "ORLAN Revisited: Disembodied Virtual Hybrid Beauty.". (shrink)
The title of this collection of essays contains a productive ambiguity that carries through the collection. The essays, by such notable thinkers as Alasdair MacIntyre, Robert Pippen, Paul Ricoeur, Stanley Rosen, Charles Taylor, and Gianni Vattimo, address both Gadamer’s own life and work that spanned just over a century and the philosophical century which he inhabited, most notably, the century in which philosophy itself grappled with the end of metaphysics and the concomitant loss of the absolute universal. It is (...) a collection that takes up from varying philosophical standpoints the ensuing linguistic turn as well as the problem of reason in both its practical and theoretical forms. Still further, it is a collection of essays which together argue that the hermeneutical standpoint articulated by Gadamer in Truth and Method may be philosophy’s best methodological hope. What makes this collection of essays both unique and invaluable is its attempt to perform a Gadamerian “fusion of horizons”; it not only brings philosophy together with other disciplines such as religion, art, and poetry, it also brings together Continental and analytic responses to Gadamer’s hermeneutical project and to the issues confronting philosophy in Gadamer’s century, a century that paradoxically remains ours. (shrink)
The point of this symposium is to locate one trajectory of the new wave of discussions about beauty beyond the customary confines of analytic aesthetics and to situate it at the intersection of aesthetics, ethics, social-political philosophy, and cultural criticism. Three essays follow this introduction authored by Marica Muelder Eaton, Paul C. Taylor, and Susan Bordo. They represent a conjoined effort to move 'beauty' beyond the traditional parameters of past contextual theories of art. This introductory essay offers some guidance (...) as to why a symposium on beauty merits attention in 1999. (shrink)
This interview with Charles Taylor explores a central concern throughout his work, namely, his concern to ‘reenchant’ self and world through a careful examination of value as emanating from the world rather than from ourselves. It focuses especially on the status of his central doctrine of ‘strong evaluation’ against the background of mainstream meta-ethical theories, such as neo-Kantian constructivism and robust realist non-naturalism. Additionally, the relationship between Taylor’s theism and his moral–political philosophy is discussed. A key issue that (...) is examined is what ontological background picture can make sense of the strong evaluative experience of higher worth. Some other related issues that are explored revolve around Taylor’s papers ‘Disenchantment-Reenchantment’ and ‘Recovering the Sacred’, which tentatively explore the meaning of reenchantment. (shrink)
ABSTRACT This article responds to the contributors to this special issue. I clarify my views on critical theory, capitalism, morality, sociality, secularity, subjectivity, and childhood. I close with some general remarks about the necessity for a hermeneutical approach to social, ethical, and political questions.
This instructional case explores ethical and leadership issues within the context of public accounting. The case examines one senior manager in a public accounting firm who failed to receive an anticipated promotion to partner and the resulting discussions and actions that follow. The primary objectives of the case are to increase students’ awareness of select ethical issues commonly faced by auditors as they attempt to serve the public trust, their clients, and their firms, and to consider their own value system (...) in relation to the issues identified in this case. The secondary learning objectives are to increase students’ knowledge of the AICPA Code of Professional Conduct / IESBA Code of Ethics, encourage consideration of the impact of ethical and unethical behaviors by auditors on others within the profession, and illustrate how leadership within an organization influences the behaviors of others. (shrink)
This interview with Charles Taylor explores a central concern throughout his work, viz., his concern to confront the challenges presented by the process of ‘disenchantment’ in the modern world. It focuses especially on what is involved in seeking a kind of ‘re-enchantment.' A key issue that is discussed is the relationship of Taylor’s theism to his effort of seeking re-enchantment. Some other related issues that are explored pertain to questions surrounding Taylor’s argument against the standard secularization thesis (...) that views secularization as a process involving the ineluctable fading away of religion. Additionally, the relationship between Taylor’s religious views and his philosophical work is discussed. (shrink)
This is the first comprehensive evaluation of Charles Taylor's work and a major contribution to leading questions in philosophy and the human sciences as they face an increasingly pluralistic age. Charles Taylor is one of the most influential contemporary moral and political philosophers: in an era of specialisation he is one of the few thinkers who has developed a comprehensive philosophy which speaks to the conditions of the modern world in a way that is compelling to specialists in (...) various disciplines. This collection of specially commissioned essays brings together twelve distinguished scholars from a variety of fields to discuss critically Taylor's work. The topics range from the history of philosophy, to truth, modernity and postmodernity, theism, interpretation, the human sciences, liberalism, pluralism and difference. Taylor responds to all the contributions and re-articulates his own views. (shrink)
Charles Taylor is one of the most influential and prolific philosophers in the English-speaking world today. The breadth of his writings is unique, ranging from reflections on artificial intelligence to analyses of contemporary multicultural societies. This thought-provoking introduction to Taylor's work outlines his ideas in a coherent and accessible way without reducing their richness and depth. His contribution to many of the enduring debates within Western philosophy is examined and the arguments of his critics assessed. Taylor's reflections (...) on the topics of moral theory, selfhood, political theory and epistemology form the core chapters within the book. Ruth Abbey engages with the secondary literature on Taylor's work and suggests that some criticisms by contemporaries have been based on misinterpretations and suggests ways in which a better understanding of Taylor's work leads to different criticisms of it. The book serves as an ideal companion to Taylor's ideas for students of philosophy and political theory, and will be welcomed by the non-specialist looking for an authoritative guide to Taylor's large and challenging body of work. (shrink)
In an earlier work I developed an argument favoring one view of persistence (viz., perdurance) over its rivals, based on considerations of the relativity of three-dimensional spatial shapes of physical objects in Minkowski spacetime. The argument has since come under criticism (in the works of Theodore Sider, Kristie Miller, Ian Gibson, Oliver Pooley, and Thomas Sattig). Two related topics, explanatory virtues and explanatory relevance, are central to these critical discussions. In this paper I deal with these topics directly and respond (...) to my critics by offering a new perspective on the issue. (shrink)
Hannah Arendt’s most important contribution to political thought may be her well-known and often-cited notion of the "right to have rights." In this incisive and wide-ranging book, Peg Birmingham explores the theoretical and social foundations of Arendt’s philosophy on human rights. Devoting special consideration to questions and issues surrounding Arendt’s ideas of common humanity, human responsibility, and natality, Birmingham formulates a more complex view of how these basic concepts support Arendt’s theory of human rights. Birmingham considers Arendt’s key philosophical works (...) along with her literary writings, especially those on Walter Benjamin and Franz Kafka, to reveal the extent of Arendt’s commitment to humanity even as violence, horror, and pessimism overtook Europe during World War II and its aftermath. This current and lively book makes a significant contribution to philosophy, political science, and European intellectual history. (shrink)
Shoma Morita, M.D. was a Japanese psychiatrist-professor who developed a unique four stage therapy process. He challenged psychoanalysts who sanctioned an unconscious or unconsciousness that resides inside the mind. Significantly, he advanced a phenomenal connection between existentialism, Zen, Nature and the therapeutic role of serendipity. Morita is a forerunner of eco-psychology and he equalised the strength between human-to-human attachment and human-to-Nature bonds. This book chronicles Morita's theory of "peripheral consciousness", his paradoxical method, his design of a natural therapeutic setting, and (...) his progressive-four stage therapy. It explores how this therapy can be beneficial for clients outside of Japan using, for the first time, non-Japanese case studies. The author's personal material about training in Japan and subsequent practice of Morita's ecological and phenomenological therapy in Australia and the United States enhance this book. LeVine's coining of "cruelty-based trauma" generates a rich discussion on the need for therapy inclusive of ecological settings. As a medical anthropologist, clinical psychologist and genocide scholar, LeVine shows how the four progressive stages are essential to the classic method and the key importance of the first "rest" stage in outcomes for clients who have been embossed by trauma. Since cognitive science took hold in the 1970s, complex consciousness theories have lost footing in psychology and medical science. This book reinstates "consciousness" as the dynamic core of Morita therapy. The case material illustrates the use of Morita therapy for clients struggling with the aftermath of trauma and how to live creatively and responsively inside the uncertainty of existence. The never before published archival biographic notes and photos of psychoanalyst Karen Horney, Fritz Perls, Eric Fromm and other renowned scholars who took an interest in Morita in the 1950s and 60s provide a dense historical backdrop. (shrink)
British art historian Charles Harrison presumes the existence of a patriarchal world with power in the hands of men who dominate the representation of women and femininity. He applauds the ground-breaking work of feminist theorists who have questioned this imbalance of power since the 1970s. He stops short, however, of accepting their claims that all women have been represented by male artists as images of “utter passivity” (p. 4), routinely reduced by the male gaze to the status of exploited sexual (...) objects, or that women’s subjectivity is eroded by the visual treatment they receive at the hands of male artists such as Manet and Picasso. He wants to show that what is depicted in the picture plane by the (typically male) artist and enjoyed by the (typically male) spectator is more nuanced than just a simple privileged understanding between two men. He adds a third (and possibly fourth or more) party to the mix when he significantly redefines and expands our concept of the gaze: “A gaze may also be conceived of as a function of a painting’s represented content” (p. 9). In other words, a gaze may be “addressed outward by a represented figure,” and regardless of who and where, “the assumption conveyed by the term [‘gaze’] is that some differential and usually asymmetrical relation will be at stake in any exchange between one who directs the gaze and another at whom it is directed. In fact, it is just this difference—in age, in sex, in class, in interest, in power —that the operation of the gaze tends to mark” (p. 9). Referring to a woman depicted within the picture plane, he asks us to consider, “What does it feel like to look like this?” (p. 21) in order to entertain our many emotional responses and interpretations. When he adds, “What does it feel like to whom?” the sexual difference of the spectator also clearly comes into play. (shrink)
Katy Deepwell calls for a vital and visible "new" feminist criticism in 1997 amidst a pessimistic overview of the state of feminist art and criticism in Britain, Canada, and the U.S. As an update to this review, I note that Deepwell took decisive and effective action on her pessimism and for the past twenty years (as of this writing in July 2017) created an online feminist journal--n.paradoxa: international feminist art journal--that has published over 550 articles by 400 writers and artists (...) from more than 80 countries. After 40 issues, the journal has come to an end. What a success story! (shrink)
The Explanation of Behaviour was the first book written by the renowned philosopher Charles Taylor. A vitally important work of philosophical anthropology, it is a devastating criticism of the theory of behaviourism, a powerful explanatory approach in psychology and philosophy when Taylor's book was first published. However, Taylor has far more to offer than a simple critique of behaviourism. He argues that in order to properly understand human beings, we must grasp that they are embodied, minded creatures (...) with purposes, plans and goals, something entirely lacking in reductionist, scientific explanations of human behaviour. Taylor's book is also prescient in according a central place to non-human animals, which like human beings are subject to needs, desires and emotions. However, because human beings have the unique ability to interpret and reflect on their own actions and purposes and declare them to others, Taylor argues that human experience differs to that of other animals. Furthermore, the fact that human beings are often directed by their purposes has a fundamental bearing on how we understand the social and moral world. Taylor's classic work is essential reading for those in philosophy and psychology as well as related areas such as sociology and religion. This Routledge Classics edition includes a new Preface by the author and a new Foreword by Alva No, setting the book in philosophical and historical context. (shrink)
This 2003 book offers an interpretation of Heidegger's major work, Being and Time. Unlike those who view Heidegger as an idealist, Taylor Carman argues that Heidegger is best understood as a realist. Amongst the distinctive features of the book are an interpretation explicitly oriented within a Kantian framework and an analysis of Dasein in relation to recent theories of intentionality, notably those of Dennett and Searle. Rigorous, jargon-free and deftly argued this book will be necessary reading for all serious (...) students of Heidegger. (shrink)
Thomas Taylor in England, by K. Raine.--Thomas Taylor in America, by G. M. Harper.--Biographical accounts of Thomas Taylor.--Concerning the beautiful.--The hymns of Orpheus.--Concerning the cave of the nymphs.--A dissertation on the Eleusinian and Bacchic mysteries.--Introduction to The fable of Cupid and Psyche.--The Platonic philosopher's creed.--An apology for the fables of Homer.--Bibliography (p. -538).
Peg Rawes examines a "minor tradition" of aesthetic geometries in ontological philosophy. Developed through Kant’s aesthetic subject she explores a trajectory of geometric thinking and geometric figurations--reflective subjects, folds, passages, plenums, envelopes and horizons--in ancient Greek, post-Cartesian and twentieth-century Continental philosophies, through which productive understandings of space and embodies subjectivities are constructed. Six chapters, explore the construction of these aesthetic geometric methods and figures in a series of "geometric" texts by Kant, Plato, Proclus, Spinoza, Leibniz, Bergson, Husserl and Deleuze. In (...) each text, geometry is expressed as a uniquely embodies aesthetic activity because each respective geometric method and figure is imbued with aesthetic sensibility and geometric sense (rather than as disembodies scientific methods). An ontology of aesthetic geometric methods and figures is therefore traced from Kant’s Critical writings, back to Plato and Proclus Greek philosophy, Spinoza and Leibniz’s post-Cartesian philosophies, and forwards to Bergson’s "duration" and Husserl’s "horizons" towards Deleuze’s philosophy of sense. (shrink)
Combating homophobia, racism, sexism, and other forms of discrimination and violence in our society requires more than just focusing on the overt acts of prejudiced and abusive individuals. The very intelligibility of such acts, in fact, depends upon a background of shared beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors that together form the context of social practices in which these acts come to have the meaning they do. This book, inspired by Wittgenstein as well as feminist and critical race theory, shines a critical (...) light on this background in order to show that we all share more responsibility for the persistence of oppressive social practices than we commonly suppose—or than traditional moral theories that connect responsibility just with the actions, rights, and liberties of individuals would lead us to believe. First sketching a nonessentialist view of rationality, and emphasizing the role of power relations, Peg O’Connor then examines in subsequent chapters the relationship between a variety of "foreground" actions and "background" practices: burnings of African American churches, hate speech, child sexual abuse, coming out as a gay or lesbian teenager, and racial integration of public and private spaces. These examples serve to illuminate when our "language games" reinforce oppression and when they allow possibilities for resistance. Attending to the background, O’Connor argues, can give us insight into ways of transforming the nature and meaning of foreground actions. (shrink)
Arthur C. Danto proposes a complex and controversial relationship between surface and deep interpretations in The Philosophical Disenfranchisement of Art (1986). We detail the analogy between understanding human actions and interpreting works of art that both develops a motivation for Danto's view and clarifies it. We object to the most plausible version of content dependency among surface and deep interpretations and in so doing, we also clarify the way in which an interpretation is constitutive of an artwork.