Philosophy – Aesthetics

Instruction & Requirements:
Answer ONE of the following questions:

\”These questions cover the summative assessment for the course. You must make use of secondary as well as primary literature in your essays, with a minimum of 8 items of secondary literature (articles or books, contemporaneous or contemporary).

1. Critically analyse, with reference to Aristotles Poetics if appropriate, the arguments behind Nietzsches statement that \”art is the highest task and the real metaphysical activity of this life. (Foreword to Richard Wagner, The Birth of Tragedy) You may, if you like, also draw upon a Greek tragedy (e.g. Euripides) for your analysisin which case you might find it useful to reflect on what role that tragedy, or a particular tragic poet, plays in the development of Aristotles and/or Nietzsches arguments about the beginning or end of philosophy.

2. Why is the concept of representation central to aesthetics? Discuss this concept in relation to ideas of imitation and reflection. Draw on relevant literature and examples.

3. Critically evaluate the paradoxical condition of knowledge in relation to aesthetics. Draw on relevant literature and examples.

4. Critically discuss how empiricism contributes to an aesthetics based on sensation. Discuss through a close reading of the relevant literature and by drawing on relevant examples.

5. Critically evaluate Shaftesbury\’s and/or Burke\’s arguments about taste. How do they reflect their understanding of the nature of freedom?

6. Looking closely at a section from Kants Critique of the Power of Judgment, and with reference to his overall project and secondary literature (which includes both contemporaneous sources and critical literature), critically evaluate the broader implications that one or more of the following aesthetic concepts might hold for political philosophy: a) feeling b) taste c) free play d) (ideal of) beauty e) purposiveness without end f) the sublime g) common sense h) symbol\”

Attached as a file is the document containing the reading lists, refer to texts from the reading list as much as possible.

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