The theme of 'disinterest' is a dominant one in philosophical accounts of aesthetic experience, and, unlike many philosophical themes, it has had and continues to have a huge effect, on presuppositions about the nature of judgment, of feeling, of art, of resistance, of all of those experiences and activities that appear to operate at least partly outside of the given regulations of human existence. The Art Kettle has two aims: first, to show that 'modern' art - that is, art during and since the Enlightenment - is not only itself defined by 'disinterest,' by dearth of purpose, but functions as a standard for creativity, for free thinking, for choice, for indulgence, for questioning, and for protest, that suits very well the requirement, in our capitalist democracies, that differences and resistances expend themselves without effect on the combination of conservatism and consumption that supports these democracies; second, to show that the historical conflation of aesthetic experience and 'disinterest' is subject to resistance from another historical conflation: of aesthetic experience and use or purpose.
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Sinead Murphy teaches philosophy at Newcastle University.
The Art Kettle by Sinead Murphy
Used - Very Good
John Hunt Publishing
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