Aesthetics at LargeVolume 1: Art, Ethics, Politics

Aesthetics at LargeVolume 1: Art, Ethics, Politics

Thierry de Duve

Print publication date: 2019

ISBN: 9780226546568

Publisher: University of Chicago Press


It has been the author’s conviction since Kant after Duchamp (MIT Press, 1996) that Marcel Duchamp’s readymades have forced the cultural critic who takes them seriously to rethink the “concept” of art from the ground up, but in such a way that continuity with the art of the past would not be jettisoned. The crucible for this conviction is whether the appreciation of post-Duchamp art is still “aesthetic” or not. Aesthetics at Large argues that it is, that it must be, and that there is no better account of aesthetic judgment than the one given by Immanuel Kant in his Critique of Judgment. Taking it from there, the book seeks to offer a contemporary update of Kantian aesthetics and its consequences for ethics and politics. The book’s guiding thread is the thesis that Kant’s sensus communis is as relevant to the appreciation of art today as it was to the admiration of beautiful nature in 1790.