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The Introduction to Hegel's Philosophy of Fine Arts

Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .The general formulæ which were abstracted by such writers were meant to stand especially as precepts and rules, according to which, particularly in times of degeneration of poetry and art, works of art were meant to[Pg 29] be produced. The prescriptions, however, compiled by these physicians of art had even less assured success than those of physicians whose aim was the restoration of health.

Respecting theories of this kind, I propose merely to mention that, though in detail they contain much that is instructive, yet their remarks were abstracted from a very limited circle of artistic productions, which passed for the genuinely beautiful ones, but yet always belonged to a but narrow range of art. And again, such formulæ are in part very trivial reflections which in their generality proceed to no establishment of particulars, although this is the matter of chief concern.

The above-mentioned Horatian epistle is full of these reflections, and, . . . Read More

Community Reviews

Ik startte dit boekje niet voor mijn plezier, maar raar maar waar, raakte ik na een tijdje doorbijten toch wat meegesleept. Hegel blijft complex, maar Francis zal tevreden zijn

هذا هو اول كتاب لموسوعة علم الجمال الهيگليّة، وهو بدوره يعد ممهدا لما يليه من الكتب الاخرى التي تتناول وبالتفصيل فكرة الجمال، فالجمال الفني يستمد تفوقه من كونه يصدر عن الروح، وبالتالي عن الحقيقة، بحيث ان ماهو موجود لايوجد الا بقدر ما يدينبوجوده لما هو اسمى منه، ولايكون ما هو كائن عليه ولايمتلك ما يم

Victorian art critic Walter Pater said that all art aspires to the condition of music. With GWF Hegel, on the other hand, one might say that all of the arts aspire to the condition of poetry, and that all poetry aspires to the Idea of the Beautiful… a-a-and that the Beautiful is but a stepping stone

I like Hegel. He's a nice breath of fresh air after Kant's prose. But I don't buy this idea of history being progressive. We continually repeat past mistakes (both literally and intellectually) so we need reminders through art. I think. But I'm no Hegel.

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