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Values of Beauty
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Values of Beauty discusses major ideas and figures in the history of aesthetics from the beginning of the eighteenth century to the end of the twentieth century. The core of the book features Paul Guyer's essays on the epochal contribution of Immauel Kant, and sets Kant's work in the context of predecessors, contemporaries, and successors including David Hume, Alexander Gerard, Archibald Alison, Arthur Schopenhauer, and John Stuart Mill All of the essays emphasize the complexity rather than isolation of our aesthetic experience of both nature and art; and the interconnection of aesthetic values such as beauty and sublimity on the one hand, and prudential and moral values on the other. Guyer emphasizes that the idea of the freedom of the imagination as the key to both artistic creation and aesthetic experience has been a common thread throughout the modern history of aesthetics, although the freedom of the imagination has been understood and connected to other forms of freedom in a variety of ways.

Reviews

'The author's attentive critique of Kant's position on the aesthetic experience of the ugly introduces a core motif sounding throughout the book … Guyer's book demonstrates his ability to discuss elusive ideas and impenetrable Kantian passages in a fluid and lucid prose. … I warmly recommend Values of Beauty for those desiring to deepen their understanding of Kant and his legacy in the history of modern aesthetics.'

Source: Philosophical Writings

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