Art history, the problem of style, and Arnold Hauser’s contribution to the history and sociology of knowledge
- Axel Gelfert
- … show all 1 hide
Rent the article at a discountRent now
* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.Get Access
Much of Arnold Hauser’s work on the social history of art and the philosophy of art history is informed by a concern for the cognitive dimension of art. The present paper offers a reconstruction of this aspect of Hauser’s project and identifies areas of overlap with the sociology of knowledge—where the latter is to be understood as both a separate discipline and a going intellectual concern. Following a discussion of Hauser’s personal and intellectual background, as well as of the shifting political and academic setting of his work, the paper addresses one of Hauser’s central questions, viz. how best to square a thoroughgoing commitment to the social nature of art with the reality of successive artistic styles, given that the latter seem to be characterizable on purely formal grounds. This is followed by a discussion of Hauser’s conflicted views on the relation between art, science, and technology. This injects a tension into Hauser’s work, due to his initial reluctance to explain just how the aesthetic and the cognitive realms relate. The final part of the paper, through a closer examination of the analogies and disanalogies that Hauser sees between art history and the history of science, attempts to give a positive answer—“on Hauser’s behalf”, as it were—to the question of whether art may be credited with a specific cognitive dimension of its own, and if so, what its contribution to our cognitive enterprise may consist in.
- Burke, P. (2008). What is cultural history? London: Polity.
- Congdon, L. (2004). Arnold Hauser and the retreat from Marxism. In T. Demeter (Ed.), Essays on Wittgenstein and Austrian philosophy (pp. 41–61). Amsterdam: Rodopi.
- Demeter, T. (2008). The sociological tradition of Hungarian philosophy. Studies in East European Thought, 60, 1–16. CrossRef
- Feyerabend, P. (1975). Against method. London: Verso.
- Forgács, É. (2008). The safe haven of a new classicism: The quest for a new aesthetics in Hungary 1904–1912. Studies in East European Thought, 60, 75–95. CrossRef
- Fuller, S. (2000). Thomas Kuhn: A philosophical history for our times. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
- Gelfert, A. (2010). Kant and the Enlightenment’s contribution to social epistemology. Episteme, 7, 79–99. CrossRef
- Gluck, M. (1985). Georg Lukács and his generation 1900–1918. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
- Gombrich, E. H. (Ed.), (1963). The social history of art. In Meditations on a hobby horse and other essays on the theory of art (pp. 86–94). London: Phaidon Press.
- Hauser, A. (1951). The social history of art. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. (Originally 2 vols.; citations follow the four-volume paperback edition 1962).
- Hauser, A. (1959). The philosophy of art history. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.
- Hauser, A. (1965). Mannerism: The crisis of the Renaissance and the origin of modern art. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.
- Hauser, A. (1978). Találkozásaim Lukács Györggyel. Budapest: Akadémiai Kiadó.
- Hauser, A. (1982). The sociology of art. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.
- Hoyningen-Huene, P. (1993). Reconstructing scientific revolutions: Thomas S. Kuhn’s philosophy of science. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
- Johnston, W. M. (1983). The Austrian mind: An intellectual and social history 1848–1938. Berkeley: University of California Press.
- Kuhn, T. S. (1969). Comment [on The new reality in art and science], Comparative Studies in Society and History 11, 403–412.
- Mannheim, K. (1956). Essays on the sociology of culture. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.
- Orwicz, M. (1985). Critical discourse in the formation of a social history of art: Anglo-American response to Arnold Hauser. Oxford Art Journal, 8, 52–62.
- Roberts, J. (2006). Arnold Hauser, Adorno, Lukács and the ideal spectator. In A. Hemingway (Ed.), Marxism and the history of art: From William Norris to the new left (pp. 161–174). London: Pluto Press.
- Simmel, G. (1978). The philosophy of money (trans: Bottomore, T., Frisby, D.). London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.
- Swanson, G. W. (1996). Marx, Weber, and the crisis of reality in Arnold Hauser’s. Sociology of Art. The European Legacy, 1, 2199–2214. CrossRef
- Wallace, D. (1996). Art, autonomy, and heteronomy: The provocation of Arnold Hauser’s The Social History of Art, Thesis Eleven, 44, 28–46.
- Wessely, A. (1995). The reader’s progress: Remarks on Arnold Hauser’s philosophy of art history. In K. Gavroglu, J. Stachel, & M. W. Wartofsky (Eds.), Science, mind and art: Essays on science and the humanistic understanding in art, epistemology, religion and ethics (pp. 29–43). Dordrecht: Kluwer.
- Wind, E. (1931). Warburgs Begriff der Kulturwissenschaft und seine Bedeutung für die Ästhetik. Vierter Kongreß für Ästhetik und allgemeine Kunstwissenschaft, Supplement to Zeitschrift für Ästhetik und allgemeine Kunstwissenschaft, 25, 163–179.
- Art history, the problem of style, and Arnold Hauser’s contribution to the history and sociology of knowledge
Studies in East European Thought
Volume 64, Issue 1-2 , pp 121-142
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Springer Netherlands
- Additional Links
- Philosophy of art history
- Problem of style
- Sociology of knowledge
- Science and art
- Axel Gelfert (1)
- Author Affiliations
- 1. National University of Singapore, Singapore, Singapore