Icon

Overview

Over the centuries, European debate about the nature and status of images of God and sacred figures has often upset the established order and shaken societies to their core. Out of this debate, an identifiable doctrine has emerged of the image in general and of the divine image in particular. This fascinating work concentrates on these historical arguments, from the period of Late Antiquity up to the great and classic defenses of images by St. John of Damascus and Theodore of Studion. Icon extends beyond the ...

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Overview

Over the centuries, European debate about the nature and status of images of God and sacred figures has often upset the established order and shaken societies to their core. Out of this debate, an identifiable doctrine has emerged of the image in general and of the divine image in particular. This fascinating work concentrates on these historical arguments, from the period of Late Antiquity up to the great and classic defenses of images by St. John of Damascus and Theodore of Studion. Icon extends beyond the immediate concerns of religion, philosophy, aesthetics, history, and art, to engage them all.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

”[This] rewarding journey...of approximately 1,200 years is taken with only small side trips, but even these are enchanting... Valuable to all of us who have inherited a secular culture.”

-Academic Library Book Review,

Booknews
In a work that lucidly engages concerns at the nexus of religion, philosophy, aesthetics, history, and art, Barasch (history of art, Hebrew U., Jerusalem) concentrates on the arguments for and against iconic representation in the early Christian world, from the period of Late Antiquity up to the great and classic defenses of images by St. John of Damascus and Theodore of Studion. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814711729
  • Publisher: New York University Press
  • Publication date: 8/1/1992
  • Pages: 308
  • Product dimensions: 0.81 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 6.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Moshe Barasch was Jack Cotton Professor of Architecture and Fine Arts at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He wrote numerous books including Icon, Theories of Art, and Modern Theories of Art I and II, all published by NYU Press. A winner of the Israel Prize in 1996, he was elected corresponding member of the Heidelberg Academy of Sciences.

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Table of Contents

Introduction
Pt. 1 Reflections in Classical Antiquity 11
1 The Biblical Prohibition of Images 13
2 Antiquity I: The Animated Image 23
1 An Introductory Observation 23
2 Eidolon 26
3 The God and His Image 28
(i) The Desire to Be Close to God 28
(ii) Dream Literature 31
(iii) Rituals 33
4 The Animated Image 36
5 Conclusions 39
3 Antiquity II: Against the Images of Gods 49
4 Resemblance: The Internal Development of the Concept 63
1 Allegory 64
2 Resemblance 70
(i) Plato's Cratylus 72
(ii) Plotinus on Intuitive Knowledge and Resemblance 74
(iii) Porphyry 78
(iv) Iamblichus 82
(v) Proclus 84
Pt. 2 The Icon in Early Christian Thought 93
5 Early Christian Apologists 95
6 Tertullian 108
7 Origen 127
8 Eusebius 141
9 Dionysius Areopagita: "Poetic" Theology 158
1 Some Characteristics of His Thought 158
2 Conflicting Themes 160
(i) Transcendence 161
(ii) Hierarchy 163
3 The Doctrine of Symbols 165
4 God's Descent 168
5 Ascent of the Mind 172
Pt. 3 The Doctrine of the Icon 183
10 In Defense of Images: John of Damascus 185
1 The New Stage 185
2 John of Damascus: The Man and the Author 188
3 Definition of the Image 192
4 Why Are Images Made?" 199
(i) The Questions 199
(ii) Schemes for Vindicating Images 200
(iii) John's View of the Image's Purpose 204
(iv) Some Implications for Art 219
5 Types of Images 220
6 The Visibility of Bodiless Beings 236
11 The Icon and the Doctrine of Art: Theodore of Studion 254
1 The Second Cycle of the Iconoclastic Debate 254
2 Theodore's Concepts and Terms 257
3 Trends and Themes in the Second Cycle 261
4 Theodore's Reply to Iconoclastic Arguments 266
5 Different Concepts of the Image 268
6 The Icon and the Theory of Art 277
(i) The Sense of Sight 277
(ii) Circumscription 279
(iii) Place 282
Name Index 291
Subject Index 295
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