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Aesthetics of Mimesis: Ancient Texts and Modern Problems (Stephen Halliwell) Paperback Book, (Princeton University Press, 2002) 9780691092584
Aesthetics of Mimesis: Ancient Texts and Modern Problems (Stephen Halliwell) Paperback Book, (Princeton University Press, 2002) 9780691092584
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Title: The Aesthetics of Mimesis: Ancient Texts and Modern Problems

Author: Halliwell, Stephen

Publisher: Princeton University Press; Publication Date: 2002

Paperback; ISBN: 9780691092584

Volumes: 1; Pages: 440

List Price in Paper: $38.95 Our price: $38.95

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Mimesis is one of the oldest, most fundamental concepts in Western aesthetics. This book offers a new, searching treatment of its long history at the center of theories of representational art: above all, in the highly influential writings of Plato and Aristotle, but also in later Greco-Roman philosophy and criticism, and subsequently in many areas of aesthetic controversy from the Renaissance to the twentieth century. Combining classical scholarship, philosophical analysis, and the history of ideas--and ranging across discussion of poetry, painting, and music--Stephen Halliwell shows with a wealth of detail how mimesis, at all stages of its evolution, has been a more complex, variable concept than its conventional translation of "imitation" can now convey.Far from providing a static model of artistic representation, mimesis has generated many different models of art, encompassing a spectrum of positions from realism to idealism. Under the influence of Platonist and Aristotelian paradigms, mimesis has been a crux of debate between proponents of what Halliwell calls "world-reflecting" and "world-simulating" theories of representation in both the visual and musico-poetic arts. This debate is about not only the fraught relationship between art and reality but also the psychology and ethics of how we experience and are affected by mimetic art.Moving expertly between ancient and modern traditions, Halliwell contends that the history of mimesis hinges on problems that continue to be of urgent concern for contemporary aesthetics.ContentsPreface viiAcknowledgments xiNote to the Reader xiiiINTRODUCTION: Mimesis and the History of Aesthetics 1PART ICHAPTER ONERepresentation and Reality: Plato and Mimesis 37CHAPTER TWORomantic Puritanism: Plato and the Psychology of Mimesis 72CHAPTER THREEMimesis and the Best Life: Plato's Repudiation of the Tragic 98CHAPTER FOURMore Than Meets the Eye: Looking into Plato's Mirror 118PART IICHAPTER FIVEInside and Outside the Work of Art: Aristotelian Mimesis Reevaluated 151CHAPTER SIXThe Rewards of Mimesis: Pleasure, Understanding, and Emotion in Aristotle's Aesthetics 177CHAPTER SEVENTragic Pity: Aristotle and Beyond 207CHAPTER EIGHTMusic and the Limits of Mimesis: Aristotle versus Philodemus 234PART IIICHAPTER NINETruth or Delusion? The Mimeticist Legacy in Hellenistic Philosophy 263CHAPTER TENImages of Life: Mimesis and Literary Criticism after Aristotle 287CHAPTER ELEVENRenewal and Transformation: Neoplatonism and Mimesis 313CHAPTER TWELVEAn Inheritance Contested: Renaissance to Modernity 344Bibliography 383Index 419
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