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The Importance of Aesthetics

  • Mary A. McCloskey

Abstract

One of the main tasks of aesthetics is to provide a rationale for judging that one thing is aesthetically better than another. The scope of such judgements may be thought of narrowly, as simply covering the field of the arts; or it may be thought of more generally, in the way that Kant thinks of it, as extending across the whole extent of our experience of things, and so including natural objects, humble artefacts and works of fine art. This first task concerns questions of value within aesthetics. Assuming that aesthetic appraisals are made, one proceeds to ask what is it that makes it fit to prize one thing rather than another, to consider one thing aesthetically better than another.

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Notes and References

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© Mary A. McCloskey 1987

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  • Mary A. McCloskey

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