The Principles Of Aesthetics
by Dewitt H. Parker

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Public Domain Books


This book has grown out of lectures to students at the University of Michigan and embodies my effort to express to them the nature and meaning of art. In writing it, I have sought to maintain scientific accuracy, yet at the same time to preserve freedom of style and something of the inspiration of the subject. While intended primarily for students, the book will appeal generally, I hope, to people who are interested in the intelligent appreciation of art.

My obligations are extensive,–most directly to those whom I have cited in foot-notes to the text, but also to others whose influence is too indirect or pervasive to make citation profitable, or too obvious to make it necessary. For the broader philosophy of art, my debt is heaviest, I believe, to the artists and philosophers during the period from Herder to Hegel, who gave to the study its greatest development, and, among contemporaries, to Croce and Lipps. In addition, I have drawn freely upon the more special investigations of recent times, but with the caution desirable in view of the very tentative character of some of the results. To Mrs. Robert M. Wenley I wish to express my thanks for her very careful and helpful reading of the page proof.

The appended bibliography is, of course, not intended to be in any sense adequate, but is offered merely as a guide to further reading; a complete bibliography would itself demand almost a volume.


Preface  •  Chapter I - Introduction: Purpose and Method  •  Chapter II - Definition of Art  •  Chapter III - The Intrinsic Value of Art  •  Chapter IV - The Analysis of the Aesthetic Experience: The Elements of the Experience  •  Chapter V - The Analysis of the Aesthetic Experience: The Structure of the Experience  •  Chapter VI - The Problem of Evil in Aesthetics, and Its Solution Through the Tragic, Pathetic, and Comic  •  Chapter VII - The Standard of Taste  •  Chapter VIII - The Aesthetics of Music  •  Chapter IX - The Aesthetics of Poetry  •  Chapter X - Prose Literature  •  Chapter XI - The Dominion of Art Over Nature: Painting  •  Chapter XII - Sculpture  •  Chapter XIII - Beauty in the Industrial Arts: Architecture  •  Chapter XIV - The Function of Art: Art and Morality  •  Chapter XV - The Function of Art: Art and Religion  •  Bibliography

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