It also studies how they feel about art– why they like some works and not others, and how art can affect their moods, beliefs, and attitude toward life. Baumgarten chose “aesthetics” because he wished the emphasize the experience of art as a mean an introduction to literature criticism and theory pdf knowing. Aesthetics, a not very tidy intellectual discipline, is a heterogeneous collection of problems that concern the arts primarily but also relate to nature.
Aestheticians compare historical developments with theoretical approaches to the arts of many periods. They study the varieties of art in relation to their physical, social, and culture environments. Aestheticians also use psychology to understand how people see, hear, imagine, think, learn, and act in relation to the materials and problems of art. Aesthetic psychology studies the creative process and the aesthetic experince. Judgments of aesthetic value rely on our ability to discriminate at a sensory level. Aesthetic judgments usually go beyond sensory discrimination. Essays Moral Political and Literary.
Indianapolis, Literary Classics 5, 1987. Judgments of beauty are sensory, emotional and intellectual all at once. Viewer interpretations of beauty may on occasion be observed to possess two concepts of value: aesthetics and taste. Aesthetics is the philosophical notion of beauty. Taste is a result of an education process and awareness of elite cultural values learned through exposure to mass culture. Bourdieu examined how the elite in society define the aesthetic values like taste and how varying levels of exposure to these values can result in variations by class, cultural background, and education. However, one may not be able to pin down these qualities in a work of art.
Judgments of aesthetical values seem often to involve many other kinds of issues as well. Aesthetic judgments may be linked to emotions or, like emotions, partially embodied in our physical reactions. Likewise, aesthetic judgments may be culturally conditioned to some extent. Aesthetic judgments can often be very fine-grained and internally contradictory.
Likewise aesthetic judgments seem often to be at least partly intellectual and interpretative. It is what a thing means or symbolizes for us that is often what we are judging. Mary Mothersill, “Beauty and the Critic’s Judgment”, in The Blackwell Guide to Aesthetics, 2004. Thus aesthetic judgments might be seen to be based on the senses, emotions, intellectual opinions, will, desires, culture, preferences, values, subconscious behaviour, conscious decision, training, instinct, sociological institutions, or some complex combination of these, depending on exactly which theory one employs.