Art and Imagination: A Study in the Philosophy of Mind

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  • Edition: Reprint
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 9/15/2015
  • Publisher: St Augustine Pr Inc
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This book presents a theory of aesthetic judgment and appreciation in the spirit of modern empiricism. There are three parts: the first deals with questions of philosophical logic, the second with questions in the philosophy of mind, and the third with questions in the philosophy of art. Thus the argument advances from a theory of aesthetic judgment (and in particularly of "aesthetic description") to a theory of aesthetic appreciation, and thence to an account of the nature and value of art. Scruton examines and rejects various attempts made by recent philosophers to demarcate the realm of aesthetic judgment. He argues that the logic of aesthetic judgment does not suffice to distinguish what is "aesthetic" from what is not, for aesthetic judgments must be explained in terms of the conditions for their acceptance rather than the conditions for their truth. These "acceptance conditions" can be understood only if we first know what is meant by aesthetic experience. This theory attempts to show how aesthetic experience can be regarded as autonomous, even though it is intimately connected with ordinary experience, and is indeed dependent on ordinary experience for its full description.

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