By Ramona Cormier, Shannon Dubose, James K. Feibleman, John D. Glenn Jr., Harold N. Lee, Marian L. Pauson, Louise N. Roberts, John Sallis (auth.)
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Additional info for Aesthetics I
What, precisely, is aesthetic existence? The term "aesthetic" naturally suggests a life of sheer, unreflective immediacy. But this is far from being the case with the young aesthete, as can be seen from even a cursory reading of the "Diapsalmata," the collection of lyrical and aphoristic paragraphs which constitute the overture to the first volume of Either/Or. There, and in the succeeding sections, it becomes evident that he is almost unimaginably reflective. l In fact, he has nearly lost all immediacy, and a longing for this lost immediacy is revealed in his complaints concerning his own aesthetic acedia: Wine can no longer make my heart glad; a little of it makes me sad, much makes me melancholy.
Either/Or, I, p. 213) Another means by which the young aesthete seeks to express and maintain his transcendence is laughter: Of all ridiculous things, it seems to me the most ridiculous is to be a busy man of affairs, prompt to meals, and prompt to work. Hence when I see a fly settle down in a crucial moment on the nose of a business man, or see him bespattered by a carriage ... , or a tile from the roof falls down and strikes him dead, then I laugh heartily. And who could help laughing? What do they accomplish, these hustlers?
The feeling of beauty promises security because its effect is to make the spectator feel that he belongs somehow to the world at its most valuable. The method of art is a variant of the method of inference employed in logical structures. In a first step axioms are established, and this is followed by a drawing of theorems. The axiomatic method may be observed more clearly in those arts which require an interval of time for their complete exposure, such as music, the theatre, or any narrative. Consider for example Kafka's short story "Metamorphosis".
Aesthetics I by Ramona Cormier, Shannon Dubose, James K. Feibleman, John D. Glenn Jr., Harold N. Lee, Marian L. Pauson, Louise N. Roberts, John Sallis (auth.)