By R. G. Collingwood
This treatise on aesthetics starts off through displaying that the notice "art" is used as a reputation not just for "art right" but additionally for convinced issues that are "art falsely so called." those are craft or ability, magic, and leisure, every one of which, via confusion with paintings right, generates a fake aesthetic thought. during attacking those theories the writer criticizes quite a few mental theories of paintings, deals a brand new idea of magic, and reinterprets Plato's so-called "attack on art," displaying that it's been solely misunderstood. eventually, he attracts very important inferences about the place of paintings in human society.
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Extra resources for The Principles of Art
He realizes that the scientist's business is to connect facts not ART AS MAGIC ' 63 " ''* ,«rjth occult entities, but with other facts. ', he answers it by bringing the supposed facts of magic into relation with those of compulsionneurosis as studied by himself in his own patients. A child, he points out, satisfies its wishes by means of sensory hallucinations ; that is, it creates satisfying sensations by the centrifugal excitement of its sensory organs. The savage does something not identical with this, but similar to it.
The defence admits all the facts alleged by the prosecution, but turns them to the accused's credit. This is effected by carrying the psychological analysis of the effect of amusement art on its audience one stage further, beyond the point where Plato had left it. Tragedy generates in the audience emotions of pity and fear. A mind heavily charged with these emotions is thereby unfitted for practical life. So far Aristotle and Plato are in agreement. Plato proceeds at once to his conclusion: therefore tragedy is detrimental to the practical life of its audience.
At a dinner party, host and guest eat the same food to symbolize the sense of intimacy and friendliness that is to pervade their more sympathetic future relations. At a dance the embrace of partners is a symbol for the embrace of love. Regarded from the strictly aesthetic point of view, all these rituals are in general as mediocre as an average Academy portrait, and for the same reason. The artistic motive is present in them all; but it is enslaved and denatured by its subordination to the magical.