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Art and Truth after Plato$
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Tom Rockmore

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780226040028

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226040165.001.0001

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Plato and Platonism on Poetry, Art, and Truth

Plato and Platonism on Poetry, Art, and Truth

(p.11) Chapter One Plato and Platonism on Poetry, Art, and Truth
Art and Truth after Plato

Tom Rockmore

University of Chicago Press

This chapter argues that Plato’s criticism of contemporary art is not based on aesthetic grounds but is rather drawn from the angle of vision of his own theory of knowledge, which in turn presupposes a nonstandard conception of philosophical art based on an intuitive grasp of the forms. In other words, Plato believed that aesthetics presupposes epistemology. The suggestion that Plato’s attack on art as imitation derives from the theory of forms presupposes that such a theory can be identified in his writings. Important texts, positions, and theories are often enshrouded in hermeneutical controversy. This factor is increased when it comes to concerns regarding the so-called Platonic theory of forms, which never reaches a final formulation in his writings. Plato’s view of this theory is unknown and cannot now be determined, making its interpretation, general contours, and even its existence controversial until today.

Keywords:   contemporary art, philosophical art, theory of knowledge, aesthetics, epistemology, forms

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