Karol Berger A Theory of Art

ISBN 13: 9780195128604

A Theory of Art

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9780195128604: A Theory of Art

What, if anything, has art to do with the rest of our lives, and in particular with those ethical and political issues that matter to us most? Will art created today be likely to play a role in our lives as profound as that of the best art of the past?

A Theory of Art shifts the focus of aesthetics from the traditional debate of "what is art?" to the engaging question of "what is art for?" Skillfully describing the social and historical situation of art today, author Karol Berger argues that music exemplifies the current condition of art in a radical, acute, and revealing fashion. He also uniquely combines aesthetics with poetics and hermeneutics. Offering a careful synthesis of a wide breadth of scholarship from art history, musicology, literary studies, political philosophy, ethics, and metaphysics, and written in a clear, accessible style, this book will appeal to anyone with a serious interest in the arts.

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About the Author:


Karol Berger Is Osgood Hooker Professor in Fine Arts at Stanford University. He is the author of numerous studies in the history of music aesthetics and theory, vocal pholyphony from 1400 to 1600, and instrumental music from 1780 to 1850. His Musica Ficta (1987) won the Otto Kinkeldey Award of the American Musicological Society.

Review:


"Here, musicologist Berger does nothing less than pull back the reins of postmodernism in favor of what could be called a balanced modernism."-- Liberary Journal


"This book is an intellectual feast. Berger argues with such clarity that even when one disagrees one learns. He's playing in the same league as the authors he cites: Hegel, Kant, Schopenhauer, and especially Aristotle. He deserves their company."--Richard Taruskin, Class of 1955 Professor of Music, University of California, Berkeley


"Berger's A Theory of Art is a tour de force of breadth, comprehension, and coverage. Its argumentative style is eminently lucid, accessible, and honest."--Lydia Goehr, Professor of Philosophy, Columbia University


"Not content simply to repeat or reformulate what others have said before him, Berger aims to show us how we can view art in a new way. Berger writes with great elegance, and has the uncanny ability to spin an elaborate web of ideas from the most basic premises. His concern with the function of art makes his book particularly relevant in light of current debates about public funding for the arts and about the place of art in our school curricula. Berger's A Theory of Art is a convincingly argued, richly textured, and timely book that will speak powerfully not only to academics in the various humanistic disciplines, but to anyone seriously interested in the arts."--John Daverio, Professor of Music, Boston University


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