Sense of Beauty: Being the Outline of Aesthetic Theory

Overview

It is remarkably appropriate that this work on aesthetics should have been written by George Santayana, who is probably the most brilliant philosophic writer and the philosopher with the strongest sense of beauty since Plato. It is not a dry metaphysical treatise, as works on aesthetics so often are, but is itself a fascinating document: as much a revelation of the beauty of language as of the concept of beauty.
This unabridged reproduction of the 1896 edition of lectures ...

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The Sense of Beauty

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Overview

It is remarkably appropriate that this work on aesthetics should have been written by George Santayana, who is probably the most brilliant philosophic writer and the philosopher with the strongest sense of beauty since Plato. It is not a dry metaphysical treatise, as works on aesthetics so often are, but is itself a fascinating document: as much a revelation of the beauty of language as of the concept of beauty.
This unabridged reproduction of the 1896 edition of lectures delivered at Harvard College is a study of "why, when, and how beauty appears, what conditions an object must fulfill to be beautiful, what elements of our nature make us sensible of beauty, and what the relation is between the constitution of the object and the excitement of our susceptibility."
Santayana first analyzes the nature of beauty, finding it irrational, "pleasure regarded as the quality of a thing." He then proceeds to the materials of beauty, showing what all human functions can contribute: love, social instincts, senses, etc. Beauty of form is then analyzed, and finally the author discusses the expression of beauty. Literature, religion, values, evil, wit, humor, and the possibility of finite perfection are all examined. Presentation throughout the work is concrete and easy to follow, with examples drawn from art, history, anthropology, psychology, and similar areas.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780486202389
  • Publisher: Dover Publications
  • Publication date: 6/1/1955
  • Pages: 168
  • Sales rank: 977,831
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.49 (h) x 0.39 (d)

Meet the Author

William G. Holzberger is Professor of English Emeritus at Bucknell University.

Herman J. Saatkamp, Jr., is Head of the Department of Philosophy and Humanities at Texas A&M University.

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Table of Contents

INTRODUCTION
PART I. THE NATURE OF BEAUTY
1. The philosophy of beauty is a theory of values
2. Preference is ultimatly irrational
3. Contrast between moral and æsthetic values
4. Work and play
5. All values are in one sense æsthetic
6. Æsthetic consecration of general principles
7. Æsthetic and physical pleasure
8. The differentia of æsthetic pleasure not its disinterestedness
9. The differentia of æsthetic pleasure not its universality
10. The differentia of æsthetic pleasure: its objectication
11. The definition of beauty
PART II. THE MATERIALS OF BEAUTY
12. All human functions may contribute to the sense of beauty
13. The influence of the passion of love
14. Social instincts and their æsthetic influence
15. The lower senses
16. Sound
17. Colour
18. Materials surveyed
PART III. FORM
19. There is a beauty of form
20. Physiology of the perception of form
21. Values of geometrical figures
22. Symmetry
23. Form the unity of a manifold
24. Multiplicity in uniformity
25. Example of the stars
26. Defects of pure multiplicity
27. Æsthetics of democracy
28. Values of types and values of examples
29. Origin of types
30. The average modified in the direction of pleasure
31. Are all things beautiful?
32. Effects of indeterminate organization
33. Example of landscape
34. Extensions to objects usually not regarded æsthetically
35. Further dangers of indeterminateness
36. Illusion of infinite perfection
37. Organized nature the source of apperceptive forms; example of sculpture
38. Utility the principle of organization in nature
39. The relation of utility to beauty
40. Utility the principle of organization in the arts
41. Form and adventitious ornament
42. Form in Words
43. Syntactical form
44. Literary form. The plot
45. Character as an æthetic form
46. Ideal characters
47. The religious imagination
PART IV. EXPRESSION
48. Expression defined
49. The associative process
50. Kinds of value in the second term
51. Æsthetic value in the second term
52. Practical value in the same
53. Cost as an element of effect
54. The expression of economy and fitness
55. The authority of morals over æsthetics
56. Negative values in the second term
57. Influence of the first term in the pleasing expression of evil
58. "Mixture of other expressions, including that of truth"
59. The liberation of self
60. The sublime independent of the expression of evil
61. The comic
62. Wit
63. Humour
64. The grotesque
65. The possibility of finite perfection
66. The stability of the ideal
67. Conclusion
INDEX
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