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We have reached the end of art, states Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel in The Philosophy of Art. Hegel charts the progression of art in order to show how it reached its full and final development. But that does not mean that art is dead to us-far from it. Hegel argues for the significance of the philosophy of art, which for him ranks higher than the study of nature in terms We have reached the end of art, states Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel in The Philosophy of Art. Hegel charts the progression of art in order to show how it reached its full and final development. But that does not mean that art is dead to us-far from it. Hegel argues for the significance of the philosophy of art, which for him ranks higher than the study of nature in terms of aiding our understanding of reality. Accompanying Hegel's overview of his science of aesthetics are a laudatory introduction by the prominent nineteenth-century scholar and translator W. Hastie and an extensive elaboration of Hegel's ideas by his student C. L. Michelet. Pt. I Hegel's introduction to the philosophy of art as the science of aesthetics -- Hegel's introduction on the nature, methods and division of aesthetics -- Definition of aesthetics, and refutation of objections -- The methods of scientific treatment -- Division of beautiful art as an organic whole -- Pt. II Michelet's philosophy of art as the science of aesthetics -- Introduction: aesthetics in general -- Formative art: architecture, sculpture, painting -- Musical art: music as art in tone -- Poetic art: poetry as art in speech.


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We have reached the end of art, states Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel in The Philosophy of Art. Hegel charts the progression of art in order to show how it reached its full and final development. But that does not mean that art is dead to us-far from it. Hegel argues for the significance of the philosophy of art, which for him ranks higher than the study of nature in terms We have reached the end of art, states Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel in The Philosophy of Art. Hegel charts the progression of art in order to show how it reached its full and final development. But that does not mean that art is dead to us-far from it. Hegel argues for the significance of the philosophy of art, which for him ranks higher than the study of nature in terms of aiding our understanding of reality. Accompanying Hegel's overview of his science of aesthetics are a laudatory introduction by the prominent nineteenth-century scholar and translator W. Hastie and an extensive elaboration of Hegel's ideas by his student C. L. Michelet. Pt. I Hegel's introduction to the philosophy of art as the science of aesthetics -- Hegel's introduction on the nature, methods and division of aesthetics -- Definition of aesthetics, and refutation of objections -- The methods of scientific treatment -- Division of beautiful art as an organic whole -- Pt. II Michelet's philosophy of art as the science of aesthetics -- Introduction: aesthetics in general -- Formative art: architecture, sculpture, painting -- Musical art: music as art in tone -- Poetic art: poetry as art in speech.

30 review for The Philosophy of Art

  1. 4 out of 5

    Nathan

    I took a course on this in my Junior year of university. We read volume 1 cover to cover and roughly 1/3-1/2 of volume 2. Needless to say, it was an incredibly difficult and rough class. However it was well worth it. This text served as a nice introduction to Hegel. We learned many of Hegel's basic and essential concepts, along with his method. In the fall semester of Senior year I took another course on Hegel, except this time on PhG Ch. IV and VI and some of SoL. The latter texts were much eas I took a course on this in my Junior year of university. We read volume 1 cover to cover and roughly 1/3-1/2 of volume 2. Needless to say, it was an incredibly difficult and rough class. However it was well worth it. This text served as a nice introduction to Hegel. We learned many of Hegel's basic and essential concepts, along with his method. In the fall semester of Senior year I took another course on Hegel, except this time on PhG Ch. IV and VI and some of SoL. The latter texts were much easier having had the aesthetics under my belt. However, it was not simply a matter of difficulty. Finding Hegel's main texts easier meant I could spend more time on it and get more out of it, without jumping through linguistic and methodological hoops. So if you are new to Hegel I recommend starting here.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Rina

    Not the easiest read ever, but extremely insightful! Even now, after two centuries and countless revolutions in the philosophy of art, this book has a lot to offer. Some ideas may be out of date and are fascinating more from the historical point of view, but many of Hegel's thoughts still hold to this day, and couldn't be expressed better. Not the easiest read ever, but extremely insightful! Even now, after two centuries and countless revolutions in the philosophy of art, this book has a lot to offer. Some ideas may be out of date and are fascinating more from the historical point of view, but many of Hegel's thoughts still hold to this day, and couldn't be expressed better.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Shyam

    On the other hand however, art seems to proceed from a higher impulse and to satisfy higher needs,—at times the highest and absolute needs . . . The genuine, immortal works of art remain enjoyable by all ages and nation . . . It could of course be said that what is really excellent must be excellent for all time. __________ . . . they are simply deceived, poor limited creatures, without the faculty and ability to apprehend and reach the loftiness of my standpoint. __________ If Western Philosophy On the other hand however, art seems to proceed from a higher impulse and to satisfy higher needs,—at times the highest and absolute needs . . . The genuine, immortal works of art remain enjoyable by all ages and nation . . . It could of course be said that what is really excellent must be excellent for all time. __________ . . . they are simply deceived, poor limited creatures, without the faculty and ability to apprehend and reach the loftiness of my standpoint. __________ If Western Philosophy is a series of footnotes to Plato, Aesthetics is a series of footnotes to Hegel. The comprehensive work on Aesthetics. Titanic, expansive, and systematic. __________ The beauty of art is higher than nature. However all this may be, it is certainly the case that art no longer affords the satisfaction of spiritual needs which earlier ages and nations sought in it, and found in it alone. For connoisseurship, and this is its defective side, may stick at acquaintance with purely external aspects, the technical, historical, etc., and perhaps have little notion of the true nature of the work of art, or even know nothing of it at all. In this way the sensuous aspect of art is spiritualized, since the sprit appears in art as sensuous. It must be a spiritual activity which yet contains at the same time the element of sensuousness and immediacy. Almost anyone can get up to a certain point in an art, but to get beyond this point, where art proper only now begins, an inborn, higher talent for art is indispensable. The aim of art must therefore lie in something still other than the purely mechanical imitation of what is there, which in every case can bring to birth only technical tricks, not works, of art. Art lifts him with gentle hands out of and above imprisonment in nature. He lifts himself to eternal ideas, to a realm of thought and freedom. For other ends, like instruction, purification, bettering, financial gain, struggling for fame and honour, have nothing to do with the work of art as such, and do not determine its nature. The first point here is the demand that the content which is to come into artistic representation should be in itself qualified for such representation. First, art begins when the Idea, still in its indeterminacy and obscurity, or in bad and untrue determinacy, is made the content of artistic shapes. Being indeterminate, it does not yet possess in itself that individuality which the Ideal demands; its abstraction and one-sidedness leave its shape externally defective and arbitrary. The first form of art is therefore rather a mere search for portrayal than a capacity for true presentation; the Idea has not found the form even in itself and therefore remains struggling and striving after it. We may call this form, in general terms, the symbolic form of art. An unknown block of stone may symbolise the Divine, but it does not represent it. Its natural shape has no connection with the Divine and is therefore external to it and not an embodiment of it. When shaping begins, the shapes produced are symbols, perhaps, but in themselves are fantastic and monstrous. [Note] In this way romantic art is the self-transcendence of art but within its own sphere and in the form of art itself. Inwardness celebrates its triumph over the external and manifests its victory in and on the external itself, whereby what is apparent to the senses alone sinks into worthlessness. But, looked at more closely, the true is nevertheless distinct from the beautiful. Truth in that case is to be gained only by the subjugation of subjectivity. The beautiful, on the other hand, is in itself infinite and free. the sphere of the beautiful is withdrawn from the relativity of finite affairs and raised into the absolute realm of the Idea and its truth. For men have more serious interests and aims which enter in through the unfolding and deepening of spirit and in which men must remain in harmony with themselves. The higher art will be that which has as its task the representation of this higher content. The ideal individual must be self-contained. The individual should not be deprived of his right to align himself of his own free will with this or that class. Aptitude, talent, skill and education alone have to lead to a decision in this matter and to decide it . . . First, the individual with his spiritual qualities must already have actually overstepped the natural barrier and its power which his wishes and aims are meant to surmount, or otherwise his demand is over again just a folly. But in art what should move us is only the inherently genuine ‘pathos’. Still, by making this demand, we must attack many productions, especially of more modern art. The important thing is an inherently specific essential ‘pathos’ in a rich and full breast whose inner individual world is penetrated by the ‘pathos’ in such a way that this penetration, and not the ‘pathos’ alone as such, is represented. As a means for this putting oneself outside and beyond, there remains nothing over in that case except withdrawal into the inner world of feelings which the individual does not leave, and now in this unreality regards himself as a sapient being who just looks longingly to heaven and therefore thinks he may disdain everything on earth. But in no art should this definiteness go astray into the prose of actual nature and its direct imitation . . . Similarly, many a man seeks in vain in the most beautiful love-songs for his own feelings and therefore declares that the description is false, just as others, whose knowledge of love is drawn from romances alone, do not now suppose themselves to be actually in love until they encounter in and around themselves the very same feelings and situations [as those described in the romances]. Consequently genius does burst forth in youth, as was the case with Goethe and Schiller, but only middle or old age can bring to perfection the genuine maturity of the work of art. On the other hand, neither can inspiration be summoned by a spiritual intention to produce. A man who simply resolves to be inspired in order to write a poem, paint a picture, or compose a tune, without already carrying in himself some theme as a living stimulus and must just hunt around here and there for some material, then, no matter what his talent, cannot, on the strength of this mere intention, form a beautiful conception or produce a solid work of art. Neither a purely sensuous stimulus nor mere will and decision procures genuine inspiration, and to make use of such means proves only that the heart and the imagination have not yet fastened on any true interest. But if the artistic urge is of the right kind, this interest has already in advance been concentrated on a specific object and theme and kept firmly to it. His aspiration remains a more objective joy in the topic of his comparisons and therefore is more contemplative. With a free heart he looks about him in order to see in everything surrounding him, in everything he knows and loves, an image of what his sense and spirit are preoccupied with and of what engrosses him to the full. The individual has not merely immersed himself directly in his specific situation, feeling, or passion, but that as a high and noble being he is superior to them and can cut himself free from them. Passion restricts and chains the soul within, narrows it, and concentrates it within limits, and therefore makes it inarticulate, talking in single syllables, or raging and blustering in vagueness and extravagance. But greatness of mind, force of spirit, lifts itself above such restrictedness and, in beautiful and tranquil peace, hovers above the specific ‘pathos’ by which it is moved. Through the eye we look into a man’s soul, just as his spiritual character is expressed by his whole demeanour in general. Of a similar kind is the witty French saying: ‘God made men in his own image, but man has returned the compliment by making God in the image of man.’ It must be withdrawn from all finitude, everything transient, all preoccupation with what is purely sensuous. Schiller’s famous saying: “Since the gods were then more human, men were more godlike.” Absolute truth is on a higher level than the appearance of beauty which cannot be detached from the soil of the sensuous and apparent.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Andrew Fairweather

    This first volume of Hegel’s complete two-volume Lectures on Aesthetics is a relative of works parodied in literature for their attempt at an all-encompassing scope such as Dr. Casaubon’s failed ‘Key to All Mythologies’ In ‘Middlemarch.' It is a work which (like many of Hegel’s) tries to illustrate the movement of hundreds, no, *thousands,* of years of civilization. And you know what? Reading this attempt was not just incredibly enjoyable, but, for my part, *very* insightful. My borrowed Iinter- This first volume of Hegel’s complete two-volume Lectures on Aesthetics is a relative of works parodied in literature for their attempt at an all-encompassing scope such as Dr. Casaubon’s failed ‘Key to All Mythologies’ In ‘Middlemarch.' It is a work which (like many of Hegel’s) tries to illustrate the movement of hundreds, no, *thousands,* of years of civilization. And you know what? Reading this attempt was not just incredibly enjoyable, but, for my part, *very* insightful. My borrowed Iinter-library-loan copy is stuffed with post-its with notes scribbled on them. On every page is a phrase or paragraph which grabs hold of the mind, powerfully. No—the dust has not yet cleared as I have only just completed the first volume. But so far so good. Hegel having ideas about Aesthetics is a big deal. Aesthetics lies at the center of Hegel’s project. After all, the Spirit as the object of knowledge (where it reaches the highest stage of consciousness) is precisely what art seeks to do—place Spirit before itself as an object of knowledge. It is the marriage of the pure Logic of the Idea and Nature as it necessarily appears before us. Art is the way the Spirit realizes itself, sees itself before itself, realizing self-knowledge, *as* Spirit. The three phases of art considered here are thus stages towards a realization of art’s purpose in this regard…. until art sheds itself… With all this in mind, art provides us freedom. Through the imagination expressed in art the subject is no longer a blind slave to Logic and objective systems of understanding, nor is the subject a slave to Nature and its brutal causality. Instead, the subject finds themself in the world as expressed by the Spirit. IN THE BEGINNING, THERE WAS ART— Art begins with wonder. As Hegel bluntly puts it on page 315, “The man who does *not yet* wonder at anything still lives in obtuseness and stupidly.” What follows wonder is a conception of the world which is no longer clear to subject—a primordial division is created between the subject and object. The spectator is born… and the immediacy we once felt with nature (a concept which didn’t exist before this subject/object split) is no more. We are now have the germ of Civilization within ourselves and respect the Rationality found within ourselves. Art is, then, birthed from this unease (discontent!) of the Civilized being who no longer feels at home in their world. Art is an attempt to reconcile ourselves after the fall from Eden—a way of once again becoming at one with the external, yet no longer creatures of necessity who are bound to nature. As opposed to other animals which are at home in their internalness, chasing desire, human beings have a drive to be at peace with their world (even if this striving for peace can be very violent. Hegel himself recognizes this in his pointing out the cruelty and absurdity of the Crusades on page 588). It is hard to be endowed with Spirit, for to know oneself is to reckon with the near-impossibility of change. Hegel remarks at the end of a beautiful passage on page 149-50: “This is the prose of the world, as it appears to the consciousness both of the individual himself and of others:—a world of finitude and mutability, of entanglement in the relative, of the pressure of necessity from which the individual is in no position to withdraw. For every isolated living thing remains caught in the contradiction of being itself in its own eyes this shut-in unit and yet of being nevertheless dependent on something else, and the struggle to resolve this contradiction does not get beyond an attempt and the continuation of this eternal war." Art frees its spectator from the shackles of nature by placing some variant of the ideal (as has been developed through the movement of the Spirit) before it, thus breaking our immediate unity with nature in favor of a concordance between the Ideal and external. This placing of the Ideal before us is an essentially moral task insofar as the moral (and evil) act require the conscience of reflection—no act can be moral/evil without our consideration of the principle of the act itself. In viewing art, as in making a moral decision, there is a rational principle which we behold and consider. This is the aim of the work of art—an unveiling of the truth which reconciles the subject with their world, “spiritually animating" the moment out of the temporal. Any other purposes which may be attributed to art, such as money making, or virtues of utility, are mere incidental. THE PHASES— As art, properly speaking, the Symbolic phase is the first phase where human beings move beyond the simple worship of nature. The Symbolic phase occurs when the Idea seeks to find respite in the external, yet the incompatibility of meaning and shape is too much to overcome. Art results as a sort of excess in this incompatibility. As a result, according to Hegel, the Symbolic phase produces art that serves as a companion to a world view which sees life as essentially a riddle. This riddle isn’t necessarily one to be solved, for the meaning of “it all” (the Ideal) at this phase is understood to exist somewhere “out there” rather than recognized as the Spirit contained within the subject itself (to be fully recognized in the Romantic phase). The products of the Symbolic phase are therefore quite hysteric, grotesque, wild, and extravagant. “Restless” is a word I came across a lot, particularly in reference to Indian art. As either figures or as symbols (referents) they have a *sublime* relation to their spectator. With the sublime, there is an inherent incompatibility between meaning and the expression, for at this stage in the Symbolic phase, the Idea is thought to come from a divine outside force rather than from the negativity of the subject. The weight of the meaning is then, therefore, accepted without true comprehension. This is why at the heart of much of what we call sublime is a terror behind what is necessarily a null and pathetic expression, sometimes bizarre, sometimes grotesque. The Idea which lies behind the expression is far to vast and mysterious to lasso into comprehension. The Symbolic phase reaches its higher most inspired expression in the ancient Egyptians, particularly in their obsession with death. The worship of death and destruction in a common thread in early Symbolic religion, but the Egyptians did it best. Yet, this highest phase of the Symbolic cannot pass through the contradiction that life and death refer only to the perishing of the body—only nature dies. The Idea lives through legacy from generation to generation. Therefore, a higher principle must eventually be recognized to overcome the contradiction inherent in believing that meaning is to be found outside of the subject themself. In this realm of the true Idea, we transcend the natural arena, our bodes. This truth was first implicitly recognized by the Egyptians who made such a production of rituals of immortality and the embalming of the body—the split between the body and what transcends it is contained in this ritual. Thus the truth is no longer “out there” and meaning is liberated from its present reality and extended to the higher Ideal of rational thought. Rather than embalm the body, as the Egyptians did, it is *thought* which becomes the true bearer of the Spirit... Since the external is taken to be an immutable source of meaning outside of oneself, there is a sort of helplessness to the outlook and its attendant arts. In a stunning passage, Hegel likens its poetry to the life of a candle, whose flame burns in cheerful splendor even as it melts away in hot tears… in this world, God is always the pure independence of substance (without shape), creator of the universe, who remains eternally withdrawn. Life is, as a result, an unquestionable mystery. Our only interaction with God shows his power without making him actually appear. As the Symbolic phase develops, the separation of God (meaning) and ourselves grows greater, moving from an *UN*conscious symbolic (where life is a miracle in that there *are no* miracles and all content is the literal presence of the Absolute) to the conscious symbolic, where the external representative of meaning lies calmly at peace in its inadequacy to represent the outside world and the system of representing meaning stabilizes, giving birth to an age of fable, enigmatic riddle, and didactic poetry. We said that in the Symbolic phase that art was a companion to a worldview which saw life as a riddle—well, if we think of the riddle of the Sphinx (what walks on four legs, &c…) Oedipus answer “man.” *Know Thyself.* This answer to the riddle is the essence of the Classical phase. If a crucial motif of the Symbolic phase was to create figures of animals for worship, the Sphinx is the highest most spiritual form of the Symbolic phase. The Sphinx depicts the human form in desperate attempt to free itself from the animal, yet remains fundamentally confused, “associated with what is other than itself.” At its peak, the Symbolic is this riddle of existence. So, according the Hegel, what the Symbolic seeks, the Classical finds. In the Classical phase, the antagonism between meaning and shape is overcome as content and form are unified as the Spirit becomes actualized in the external. The art objects are now the gods personified, like human beings, but purified from blemish. The Ideal and bodily reality are thus harmonized. As can be guessed from above, the worship of animals (or nature) which was so prevalent in the Symbolic phase, ends in the Classical. Instead of creatures to be worshiped, in Greek myth animals are constantly use to illustrate the behavior of gods or mortals whose actions are beneath the dignity of the human form, or to punish, as when human beings are turned into animals. The device of metamorphosis is used constantly to show us this oscillating between dignified and base behavior. In the Theogony, the new anthropomorphic gods overthrow the gods of nature, marking the transition from the worship of figures of nature to the Idea itself, which has become freed from particularity in nature. Yet, the new gods are not simply human beings, but human Ideal forms stripped of blemish and serene in gesture, lofty in figure. In the Classical phase, actors (in the Iliad, for instance) are less their own agents (which will be the case for the Romantic phase) than servants of divine essences personified as gods. In the Greek pantheon Ideal representation is given personality and agency through the anthropomorphic representation of the gods who act independently of one another, yet mortals rarely act without divine intervention occurring either as a catalyst for action or as a corrective. If the gods intervene as they do in battle, it is to assist morals in realizing their full essence as, after all, the gods are anthropomorphic pure Ideals of essence. Furthermore, the gods are used, particularly in tragedy, to enforce the right of the state rather than the right of the family. Think—Apollo and Athena in the ‘Eumenides.’ The conflict between the family and the state is a common theme in all of the Greek tragedies, particularly of Aeschylus and Sophocles. A distinction must be made—these are not plays about rebel agents acting against the state. The Classical agent acts out of “pathos” rather than “passion” (which, again, is a phrase more appropriately applied to the Romantic phase). Rather than occurring as a result of inner conviction, acting from pathos occurs when the agent acts out of a sense of justice. Hence the contradictions found in Antigone—both sides in the play wish only to fulfill what is just, not what moves their heart. Hegel recognizes pathos as expressed in the Classical phase as the proper expression of true Art, for the agent who acts from pathos does not feel at odds with the rites of justice. The symmetry observed in nature is recognized in the unity of the subject. Contradiction only occurs when these rites collide with one another, or receive different interpretations, *not* when an agent wishes to rebel against these rites. Pathos is the act of the agent who feels resolved in the external, while, as we will see, the Romantic agent acts out of unease. This cannot be said of the Classical agent. Yet, the very serenity of the anthropomorphic figures of the gods contain their downfall. In them, the spectator feels a distance and can’t establish a living connection with them. Their very loftiness thus prevents us from fully apprehending them as bearers of Spirit. Their grace isolates us from a deeper immersion in ourselves, creating a "discontent in thought.” The statued figures are in “isolated repose” and are helpless in the face of invisible necessity, namely Fate. Fate is the only thing in Greek myth which the Gods can’t challenge. As a result Fate reveals that there is something intangible which is greater than these purified, particular, bodies. This irreconcilable relationship between Ideal and external leads to a disillusionment from the external world. What replaces the expressive pathos of the Greek is petrified Roman *Law,* which serves as fodder for parody and satire. The satirical art form relies on a petrification of stable categories which highlight the essential discordance between the individual and the State, or, the social morays and its constituent. The Romantic phase is the result of the Spirit apprehending itself as nothing but itself as a result of this disillusionment. This is because of the contradictions inherent within the Classical phase which bring about a subject cannot find rest in dead nature or dead laws. The unity of content and from that Classical finds is transcended to a higher spiritual plane in the Romantic phase which recognizes no authority but the heart. The bronze and marble of the Classical phase give place to the flesh and blood of the Romantic phase. Humankind itself is recognized further as the holder of Spirit. If the Greeks were anthropomorphic insofar as they depicted their gods in human form, in the Romantic phase (through Christianity) God *is* a human being. God only becomes fully realized through the particularity of Christ, who lived and died as a man who in “infinite grief […] sacrifices subjectivity’s very heart". The Romantic phase is thus none other than, “the inner battle of man in himself and his reconciliation with God.” Harmony, which in the Classical phase was seen to be the concordance of the human and natural realms, is now taken to be the harmonizing activity of inter-spiritual inner life with itself. The Trinity, which is both universal and particular, consists of the Father the Son, and the Holy Ghost —these are exclusive entities, yet are only fully comprehended in light of one another. Here, the Ideal carries the “principle of its own appearance,” the particular at home in the universal, the universal at rest with its particulars. The Romantic and Symbolic phase have similarities in that the Idea (meaning) and the external (referent) are both woefully separated from each other—yet, in the Romantic phase the deficiency stems from an inadequacy of the world of objects to reconcile with the subjective spirit, while in the Symbolic form it was the opposite—the world of objects could not accurately comprehend a divine external whose essence lay outside the subject. Hegel, therefore, understands the Romantic phase, despite its disunion with the external, as a higher perfection than the Symbolic. If art of the Symbolic phase lay silent, prostrate, accepting the riddle of meaning (being that incoherence between the Ideal and external), the Romantic phase runs in flight from the external world in search of meaning. Furthermore, the irreconcilability of the internal and external was in the Symbolic phase a friendly antagonism. In the Romantic phase, the antagonism is *not* a friendly one, but a contradiction responsible for the angst and anguish which marks the face of behavior of the characters in the art of the Romantic phase. If the Symbolic phase knew no peace between meaning and referent, it was, nevertheless, content with this. The Romantic turn from the Classical, in contrast, is a sort of fall from Eden where a perfect unity was once known… but now there is only incompatibility and enmity… As mentioned above, the Romantic agent acts from passion, not from pathos. Perhaps this is no fault of their own—after all, the Romantic agent lives in the universal culture of civic society, never feeling life’s rituals to be their own. What surround the agent is not their own work. Rather, the passionate agent in thrown into a world whose rites are foreign. This reminded me of Weineck’s ‘Tragedy of Fatherhood,’ where she makes the case that (roughly speaking anyway) the Greeks lived in a society which had much more sympathy for Laius insofar as he sacrificed his son in order to save the State. Today, we identify more with Oedipus, the killer of fathers who must, tragically, become a father himself. The tragic character of the Romantic phase is different from the Classical. In the Classical, the family and the state were the main antagonists whose actors worked from a sense of pathos. In the Romantic phase, actors act against a feeling of disease between the individual and their “thrownness” in the world, or, their particularity. It is not enough that the state recognize one as a valid constituent—no, the constituent must “consult the heart” to determine the validity of one’s actions. So, rather than Spirit and external attempting to reconcile (as was the case in the Classical) Spirit now seeks to reconcile with Spirit. The Spirit, as Absolute negativity, seeks recognition from another like-subject which will recognize its validity. As a result, two major themes of the Romantic phase are Chivalry and Love. Chivalry is the personal code of ethics whose judge is the soul itself rather than a social body. It moves beyond mere faith in that it requires its external exponent in the deed as recognized by an interlocutor, whereas early Romantic faith merely seeks seclusion in the sanctity of its self away from the corruption of the world. Chivalry is, then, reciprocal. Love, in turn, is the reconciliation between two subjects who live for something higher than themselves. Finally, *identity* is the community of subjects, Spirit to Spirit, elevating themselves higher and higher beyond self-contained subjectivity. The art form of the Romantic phase (which will probably be expanded upon in volume #2) is painting and music which is a rational exponent of the Spirit—it is the communal art form which goes beyond mere imitation of nature, pivoting towards subjective expression. The danger here lies in the inwardness of the artist in their expression, a “morbid saintliness” which cares not for recognition, or, in the case of humor, which insists in the sanctity of its point of view in its shallow engagement. The subject which passes through the Romantic phase is left with nothing tangible to reflect upon but their own absolute negativity. What we’re left with is art which emphasizes the artist as subject—this, according to Hegel serves as “poor inspiration” for the creation of art. Originality, rather than being a free play of the subject on their object (called a “caprice of fancies” by Hegel), ought to be an object which emerges as an especially rational piece manifest through the unique handiwork of their artist. As art becomes less and less material (moving from architecture in the Symbolic, statue in the Classical, and music in the Romantic) there is less for art to realize, externally. Maybe? I think I’ve got it right. ART IS DEAD— This, of course, brings us to the final stage : ART IS DEAD. That phrase used at the end of the Introduction—“art now transcends itself, in that it forsakes the element of a reconciled embodiment of the spirit in sensuous form and passes ove

  5. 5 out of 5

    Kyle Goetz

    I rate it low only because the book is advertised as Hegel but not even half the book is Hegel. More than half is another philosopher. I bought this book to read Hegel, not someone else (one of his students apparently). Will have to buy something else instead. But the section by Hegel is interesting, although he fails to anticipate innovations in art. for instance, Hegel says music improves upon painting by introducing the concept of time, which is a limitation of painting. but cubism specificall I rate it low only because the book is advertised as Hegel but not even half the book is Hegel. More than half is another philosopher. I bought this book to read Hegel, not someone else (one of his students apparently). Will have to buy something else instead. But the section by Hegel is interesting, although he fails to anticipate innovations in art. for instance, Hegel says music improves upon painting by introducing the concept of time, which is a limitation of painting. but cubism specifically does innovate to introduce time into painting. So I don't think Hegel has in this book captured the progression of art toward it's highest form adequately.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Aladdin Aldair

    Don’t bother

  7. 4 out of 5

    Peter

    My dissertation is on Hegel's "Lectures on Aesthetics." It's very interesting, moving from concrete example to historical analysis to philosophical speculation seamlessly. Hegel has been called "the father of art history" by Gombrich. My dissertation is on Hegel's "Lectures on Aesthetics." It's very interesting, moving from concrete example to historical analysis to philosophical speculation seamlessly. Hegel has been called "the father of art history" by Gombrich.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Josh McLemore

    I'm not a huge fan of Hegel, at all, but I really do like his views on the history of art and aesthetics overall. A very very difficult read though, as it is Hegel, have to read everything a couple of times before you can grasp his concepts. I'm not a huge fan of Hegel, at all, but I really do like his views on the history of art and aesthetics overall. A very very difficult read though, as it is Hegel, have to read everything a couple of times before you can grasp his concepts.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Amber

    An argument beginning with the belief that Art is imitation of Nature and ending by stating that Art has reached its logical end. Covers the Beautiful, the Ideal and the Divine. Heady, but good.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Red Pearl

  11. 4 out of 5

    Stacey McCreary

  12. 5 out of 5

    Rosangela

  13. 4 out of 5

    J. Neil

  14. 4 out of 5

    Luke H.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Michael

  16. 4 out of 5

    João Aparício

  17. 5 out of 5

    Marie

  18. 4 out of 5

    Joseph

  19. 4 out of 5

    Filip Mihaylov

  20. 5 out of 5

    Ashley

  21. 4 out of 5

    Rosangela

  22. 5 out of 5

    Sheikh Tajamul

  23. 5 out of 5

    Anthony Wallace

  24. 5 out of 5

    Ian Patrick

  25. 5 out of 5

    Nicolas Croze-Orton

  26. 5 out of 5

    Josip Cmrečnjak

  27. 4 out of 5

    Andy

  28. 4 out of 5

    Erinn Klein

  29. 4 out of 5

    AS

  30. 5 out of 5

    Jackie

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