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Durham University

Department of Philosophy

Aesthetics Reading Group

The Aesthetics Reading Group (ARG) is run by postgraduates in the Philosophy Department. We are open to all students and staff and intend that topics and readings will be decided by the group. The only restriction is that readings, be they historical or contemporary, should clearly address issues in philosophical aesthetics or the philosophy of art. We usually meet every Wednesday 1:45pm in the Departmental Common Room in 48/49 Old Elvet with further discussion in café or pub quite likely to occur. Each meeting will be based on an article or chapter that everyone should be able to access with a volunteer giving a brief introduction to the reading before open discussion.
The schedule and arrangements for our 2019/20 Academic Year are still pending finalisation.

Next Session:

Details pending confirmation


Any questions or suggestions for future readings, please contact me (elizabeth.bestow@durham.ac.uk)

The ARG is open to everyone whether they have studied or researched aesthetics or not, so please don't hesitate to come along. There have been some very interesting discussions so far.

Contact:

Elizabeth Bestow

Past Readings:

06/03/2019

Kahr, Madlyn Millner. “Women as Artists and ‘Women's Art.’” Woman's Art Journal, vol. 3, no. 2, 1982, pp. 28–31. JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/1358031.

27/02/2019

Art for art's sake **This session will commence at 12Noon until 1pm

20/02/2019

This session was unfortunately cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances

30/01/2019

Censorship - especially the controversial category of "obscene" art: Kieran, Matthew. "On Obscenity: The Thrill and Repulsion of the Morally Prohibited", Philosophy and Phenomenological Research Vol. LXIV, No. 1, (January 2002), University of Leeds

23/01/2019

The Possibility of a "gendered" gaze

21/11/2018

The era of capitalism, art consumption, commercialism and its relation to the art world, and in particular the art world as an institution.

07/11/2018

The process of objectification in art and the idea of the 'male gaze'.

31/10/2018

'Outsider Art'

24/10/2018

'Animals and the concept of Dignity'. We also looked at the ethics of animal acting

18/10/2018

'America and the queer diaspora: the case of artist David McDiarmid' by Sally Gray

10/10/2018

Garber, Elizabeth. “Feminism, Aesthetics, and Art Education.” Studies in Art Education, vol. 33, no. 4, 1992, pp. 210–225. JSTOR, JSTOR,

17/05/2018

There was no reading group this week

10/05/2018

On Thursday we see why fiction cannot be true.

03/05/2018

Anthony Everett's case against fictional realism

26/04/2018

This week we read Stacie Friend's paper, "The great beetle debate: A study in imagining with names". In this paper, Stacie provides
an answer to the problem of how we can say something true (or false) in cases of using empty names.

15/03/2018

For the final meeting of the term, The AestheticsReadingGroup will meet at 5pm in the Dun Cow, Old Elvet, Durham.
To finish our series on seeing the impossible, we will read 'Tim Crane, The Waterfall Illusion'.

08/03/2018

This week we continue our theme of seeing the impossible!

01/03/2018

The paper this week is about seeing the impossible!

22/02/2018

The paper this week is about truth in fiction

15/02/2018

There will not be an ARG meeting this week since there is a clash with the Royal Institute of Philosophy lecture.

08/02/2018

Creatures of Fiction - P Van Inwagen

01/02/2018

Fiction and intentionality

25/01/2018

Disgust and Aesthetics

18/01/2018

Gilgamesh and the Power of Narration

14/12/2017

The Art of Time Travel

07/12/2017

'What a Musical Work Is' - Jerrold Levinson

30/11/2017

The paper for this week is 'Defending Musical Platonism' by Julian Dodd

23/11/2017

The subject of the paper this week is can a musical work be created?

16/11/2017

Paul Guyer's "Hume, Kant, and The Standard of Taste."

09/11/2017

'Taste and Objectivity: The Emergence of the Concept of the Aesthetic' by Elisabeth Schellekens Dammann.

02/11/2017

'Role of Reflection in Hume's Aesthetics' written by our group member Byoungjae Kim

26/10/2017

'How Can We Be Moved by the Fate of Anna Karenina?' by Colin Radford.
In this paper, Radfor questions how our engagement with literature can move us emotionally

19/10/2017

The paper this week is 'The Paradox of Painful Art' by Aaron Smuts.

12/10/2017

Tamar Szabo Gendler 'The Puzzle of Imaginative Resistance'.

17/03/2017 There will be another joint Metaphysics and Aesthetics Reading Group meeting this Friday (17/03/2017) from 6 pm (Departmental Seminar Room, 50/51 Old Elvet). This week we will be reading 'What are aesthetic properties?' by Jerrold Levinson:
10/03/2017 Joint meeting with the Metaphysics Reading Group: Friday at 6pm until 7:45pm in our Departmental Seminar Room, 50/51 Old Elvet
"Artworks as Historical Individuals"
23/11/2016 Details to follow
16/11/2016 Details to follow
09/11/2016 We will return to the characterisation of music in Hegel. We will focus on his introduction and general remarks on music sections a and b (pp. 888-904): https://monoskop.org/images/2/28/Hegel_GWF_Aesthetics_Lectures_on_Fine_Art_Vol_2_1975.pdf
02/11/2016 Hegel's characterisation of music, focusing on his introduction and general remarks on music sections a and b (pp. 888-904)
https://monoskop.org/images/2/28/Hegel_GWF_Aesthetics_Lectures_on_Fine_Art_Vol_2_1975.pdf
08/06/2016 Finalisation of the reading on Kant with Paul Guyer's article comparing his approach with that of Hume
01/06/2016 Aesthetics Reading Group was postponed this week so as not to clash with the E. J. Lowe memorial lecture.
18/05/2016 Kant's Critique of Judgement, starting from section 43
11/05/2016 Kant's Critique of Judgement, starting from section 31
27/04/2016 Kant's Critique of Judgement
02/03/2016 Chapter 14 of Umberto Eco's On Ugliness (2007), 'The Ugliness of Others, Kitsch and Camp'
24/02/2016 This week Aesthetics Reading Group is continuing with our theme of the ugly, with Lucius Garvin's 'The Problem of Ugliness in Art in The Philosophical Review 57 (4) 1948: 404-409 (link)
17/02/2016 Alix Cohen's 'Kant on the Possibility of the Ugly' from the British Journal of Aesthetics (2013) 53 (2): 199-209 (link)
10/02/2016 The Critique of Judgement (focusing on the 'General Comment on the Exposition of Aesthetic Reflective Judgements')
03/02/2016 The Critique of Judgement
27/01/2016 Aesthetics Reading Group will this week continue reading through The Critique of Judgement. We're moving through the 'Analytic of the Sublime',
this time focusing on sections 27 to 29 and the comment if we have time.
20/01/2016 Aesthetics Reading Group will begin this term by returning to Kant, to continue reading through The Critique of Judgement. This week we will begin the 'Analytic of the Sublime', sections 23 to 27
15/12/2015

Aesthetics Reading Group this week will be moving to Tuesday (December 15th, 5.30pm in the Departmental Seminar Room in 50/51 Old Elvet) to avoid a clash with the department Christmas party. We'll also be covering a paper on the aesthetics of wine in honour of the festive season.

The paper is not yet available and we're still organising when and where we can meet, so please contact me (laura.dearlove@durham.ac.uk) for further details and a copy of the paper as they become available.

09/12/2015 Casey Haskins' 'Aesthetics as an Intellectual Network', from the Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 69 (3) 2011: 297-308
02/12/2015 'Delightful, Delicious, Disgusting' from the Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, 60 (3) 2002: 217-225
25/11/2015 'Art Scents: Perfume, Design and Olfactory Art' by Larry Shiner in the British Journal of Aesthetics 55 (2) 2015 (Link)
18/11/2015 Elisabeth Schellekens' 'Aesthetic Properties'.
04/11/2015 'The Analytic of the Beautiful' from Kant's Critique of Judgement
28/10/2015 'The Analytic of the Beautiful' from Kant's Critique of Judgement
21/10/2015 'The Analytic of the Beautiful' from Kant's Critique of Judgement
14/10/2015 Hume's 'Of the Standard of Taste', widely available in anthologies and in a few electronic editions through the library website (here)
01/07/2015 Emily Brady's ' Ugliness and Nature'
24/06/2015 Andrew Kania's 'In Defence of Higher-Order Musical Ontologies: A Reply to Lee B. Brown' from the British Journal of Aesthetics.
10/06/2015

David Davies' 'Interpretive Pluralism and the Ontology of Art' from the Revue Internationale de Philosophie.

03/06/2015

Julian Dodd's 'Musical Works as Eternal Types' from the British Journal of Aesthetics.

27/05/2015

Amie Thomasson's 'The Ontology of Art', chapter 4 of the Blackwell Guide to Aesthetics

20/05/2015

Maxine Sheets-Johnstone's 'From Movement to Dance'

13/05/2015

Andrew Kania's "All Play and No Work: An Ontology of Jazz".

06/05/2015

Bence Nanay's 'Musical Twofoldness'

29/04/2015

Ted Nannicelli's paper 'Instructions and Artworks: Musical Scores, Theatrical Scripts, Architectural
Plans, and Screenplays' in the British Journal of Aesthetics 2011, 54 (4): 399-414.

04/03/2015

This week Aesthetics Reading Group is continuing a series of papers on imagination and creativity, though this will be our last meeting this term to avoid clashing next week with
the E. J. Lowe Memorial Lecture. This week we're reading Berys Gaut's 'Creativity and Imagination' from Gaut & Livingston's The Creation of Art (2003).

25/02/2015

This week Aesthetics Reading Group will start a new subject area on imagination and creativity, to lead on from the last paper we covered on Conceptual Art. We'll begin with David Novitz's 'Creativity and Constraint' from the Australasian Journal of Philosophy 77 (1) 1999: 67-82.

11/02/2015

Margaret Boden's 'Creativity and Conceptual Art' in part four of Goldie and Schellekens' Philosophy and Conceptual Art (available online through the university library).

04/02/2015

Kathleen Stock's 'Sartre, Wittgenstein, and Learning from Imagination' in part three of Goldie and Schellekens' Philosophy and Conceptual Art (available online through the
university library.)

28/01/2015

ARG was postponed this week due to RIP Lecture Series

21/01/2015

Elisabeth Schellekens' 'The Aesthetic Value of Ideas' in part two of Goldie and
Schellekens' Philosophy and Conceptual Art (available online through the university library).

14/01/2015

David Davies' 'Telling Pictures: The Place of Narrative in Late Modern "Visual Art",' in part three of Goldie and Schellekens' Philosophy and Conceptual Art (available online through the
university library).

03/12/2015

One-off paper on a seasonally appropriate topic at this time of year, so in the spirit of Christmas we'll be reading Marcia Muelder Eaton's 'Laughing at the Death of Little Nell: Sentimental Art and Sentimental People' (http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/20014296?uid=3738032&uid=2&uid=4&sid=21104708476811).

26/11/2014

We will continue our topic on censorship, with Richard Shusterman's article 'Aesthetic Censorship: Censoring
Art for Art's Sake'.

19/11/2014

Matthew Kieran's article 'On Obscenity: The Thrill and Repulsion of the Morally Prohibited'.

12/11/2014

New Topic of Censorship (Beginning with Mary Devereaux's article 'Protected Space: Politics, Censorship, and the Arts.')

05/11/2014

'Classic papers in aesthetics' series with Aristotle's Poetics
(again there are many translations, but it is available online here

29/10/2014

Plato's Ion - there are lots of translations available, and it's also available online.

16/10/2014

John Dewey's 'Having an Experience' from Art as Experience (available online).

09/10/2014

Kendall Walton's 'Categories of Art'.

25/06/2014

During this session (in honour of the Wold Cup) we read Wolfgang Welsch's 'Sport Viewed Aesthetically, and Even as Art?'

18/06/2014

Aesthetics Reading Group will this week be finishing our series on the sublime with Richard Shusterman's 'Somaesthetics and Burke's Sublime'.

11/06/2014

Sheila Lintott's 'Sublime Hunger: A Consideration of Eating Disorders Beyond Beauty'.

04/06/2014

Uygar Abaci's 'Kant's Justified Dismissal of Artistic Sublimity'.

28/05/2014

Jane Forsey's 'Is a Theory of the Sublime Possible?'

21/05/2014

Sandra Shapsay's 'Contemporary Environmental Aesthetics and the Neglect of the Sublime'

14/05/2014

Patricia Matthews' 'Aesthetic Appreciation of Art and Nature'.

07/05/2014

Allen Carlson's 'Appreciation and the Natural Environment'.

30/04/2014

Paden, Harmon and Milling's 'Ecology, Evolution and Aesthetics: Towards an Evolutionary Aesthetics of Nature'.

19/03/2014

A. Kania's 'In Defence of a Higher-Order Musical Ontology: a Reply to Lee B. Brown.'

12/03/2014

W Mithen's 'The Evolution of Imagination: An Archaeological Perspective'.

05/03/2014

John Morreall's 'Cuteness'.

26/02/2014

'Why Art is not a Spandrel' by Stephen Davies, as part of our theme on aesthetics and evolution.

19/02/2014

Aesthetics and Evolution. C Nussbaum's 'Kinds, Types, and Musical Ontology'

12/02/2014

A selection of phenomenological readings in aesthetics with Anderson's 'Complicating Heidegger and the Truth of Architecture'

05/02/2014

A phenomenological approach to aesthetics with MErleau-Ponty's 'Cezanne's Doubt' (available online here)

29/01/2014

Heidegger's 'The Origin of the Work of Art'

22/01/2014

Heidegger's 'The Origin of the Work of Art' (available online here)

11/12/2013

Thomas Kulka's 'Kitsch' in honour of the festive season.

27/11/2013

A.W. Eaton's Where Ethics and Aesthetics Meet: Titian's Rape of Europa'

20/11/2013

Linda Nochlin's 'Why Have There Been No Great Women Artists?'.

13/11/2013

A. Eaton's 'What's Wrong with the (Female) Nude?'

06/11/2013

New subject area of feminist issues within aesthetics. We'll begin this week with Hans Maes' 'Who Says Pornography Can't Be Art?'

30/10/2013

Denis Dutton's 'Tribal Art and Artifact'

23/10/2013

The ARG was posponed this week due to a clash with the RIP lecture

16/10/2013

'On the Very Idea of "Outsider Art"' by David Davies (there's an image missing from the article itself due to copyright issues, but if you want to view it, it can be found here).

09/10/2013

Dominic Lopes's 'Art Without "Art"

01/05/2013

'Robust Immoralism' by A W Eaton

24/04/2013 'The Ethics of Singing Along: The Case of "Mind of a Lunatic"' by Aaron Smuts.
13/03/2013 'On Aesthetics and Function in Architecture: The Case of the “Spectacle” Art Museum' by Larry Shiner
06/03/2013 'Architecture, Life, and Habit' by Andrew Ballantyne. (2011) Journal of Aesthetic and Art Criticism 69:1
20/02/2013 Jenefer Robinsons' recent article 'On Being Moved by Architecture' Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 70: 4 (2012)
13/02/2013 Bence Nanay 'The Multimodal Experience of Art' (BJA 52:4)
30/01/2013

Listening to Music Together by Nick Zangwill. BJA 52 (4)

23/01/2013

'Touch and the Experience of the Genuine' by Carolyn Korsmeyer.

16/01/2013

Noel Carroll's 'Recent Approaches to Aesthetic Experience'.

05/12/2012

Peter Goldie's virtue theory of art, Anil Gomes' article 'Goldie on the Virtues of Art'.

28/11/2012

Peter Goldie's Virtues of Art and Human Well-Being

21/11/2012

Peter Goldie's Towards a Virtue Theory of Art.

14/11/2012

Yuriko Saito's 'Everyday Aesthetics' (Philosophy and Literature 25.1 (2001) 87-95). Available here.

31/10/2012

Sherri Irvin's 'Scratching an Itch' (2008. The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 66 (1): 25-35) which is available here.

24/10/2012

Sherri Irvin's 'The Pervasiveness of the Aesthetic in Ordinary Experience'.

17/10/2012 ‘The Myth of the Aesthetic Attitude’ George Dickie American Philosophical Quarterly, Vol. 1, No. 1 (Jan., 1964), pp. 56-65.