The Statue of Liberty Artwork

Description

  • Identify a work of art. It could be anything that you believe to be artistic – no restrictions.
  • Explain how that work of art relates to ethics, politics, or free will.

Introduction ( Paper should be 500 words)


Identify a work of art. It could be anything that you believe to be artistic – no restrictions.
Explain how that work of art relates to ethics, politics, or free will.
Reading
http://web.mnstate.edu/gracyk/courses/phil%20of%20art/printerfriendly/Tolstoy_on_Art_TWO_COLUMNS.pdf
Tolstoy v Plato
Tolstoy: man is alone and must find ways to unite. Art accomplishes this by infecting us with the
feelings of others. The three conditions:
1. Individuality
2. Clearness
3. Sincerity
Plato: Tolstoy is right, but this infection must be avoided if the feelings are not the right feelings.
What if we infect each other with feelings that will make us worse?
Discussion Question: What are the right feelings? Are some feelings right and wrong?
Tolstoy responds:
1. Art should be catholic: universal. It should thus transmit universal feelings.
2. Only two kinds of feelings are universal:
1. Feelings related to our relationship to G-d or to the brotherhood of man
1. Devotion to His will
2. Respect for man
3. All of these produce love between men
4. The aim of life is union between men – this comes from the “religious
perception” of our time
2. Simple feelings of common life
Tolstoy on counterfeit art: that which is prostituted to craftsmanship and the rules of production.
Real art issues from the inner need to “express a feeling that has accumulated.” The prostituted
art of our time leads to the “perversion of man, pleasure which never satisfies, and the weakening
of man’s spiritual strength.”
Plato would agree on most of this.
We might ask the following aesthetic questions:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
What is the value of art?
How does art affect the artist and the viewer?
How does art relate to emotion?
What is the present relation between art and commercialism?
How can we define the relationship between art and ethics?
Is all art political?
Is there high and low art? How can we know which is which?
Does art require techne?
1. Is there artistic expertise?
9. How much art do we need?
10. Is art a luxury?

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