Manual Interpretation and Construction: Art, Speech, and the Law (New Directions in Aesthetics)

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Alternatively, one could maintain that certain musical idioms that originated in Italy became characteristic of a larger European culture and that, in helping themselves to these musical ideas, Germans were not engaged in cul- tural appropriation. Stephen Davies discusses a similar example from the south Pacific. Musicians from American Samoa have appropriated Tongan lakalaka without thinking of doing so as cultural appropriation. These musicians see Samoans and Tongans as sharing Polynesian culture. Very often, talk of this or that culture is completely cogent and unobjectionable.

Some- times it will be clear that an act of cultural appropriation has occurred. My approach to understanding the concept of a given culture may be characterized as Wittgensteinian. Cultures change and their edges are not hard and fast. Nevertheless, talk of a specific culture, such as Amer- ican culture or Navajo culture, is perfectly comprehensible and un- problematic. Ordinary language, Wittgenstein assured us, is in order as it is. In ordinary language we speak of Greek culture, Navajo culture, Chinese culture, and a host of other cultures.

If ordinary language is in order, we are making sense when we speak in this manner. It can make perfect sense to say that two people belong to different cultures and that a person has engaged in cultural appropriation by taking some- thing produced in the context of another culture. That said, we need a Wittgensteinian way of understanding how speaking of cultures makes sense. Given the mutability and interpenetra- tion of cultures, we cannot give necessary and sufficient conditions for 13 Davies , p.

That is, no characteristics can be identified that individuals must have before we can say that they are culturally Haida. Neither is any characteristic enough to ensure that some- one belongs to the culture. Another way to put this point is to say that cultures do not have an essence. That is, there is no essential charac- teristic possessed by everyone who is properly categorized as participat- ing in Haida culture.

If cultures cannot be defined in terms of essences, we need another way of conceptualizing them. Wittgenstein thought that no property is shared by, for example, all games. Games have a variety of properties. Some are played on a board, some have two teams, some have winners and losers, some require the use of a ball, and some are played in a field.

No game, however, has all of these characteristics. There is no property that an activity must possess in order to count as a game. Neither is there any property which, if possessed by an activity, is sufficient to make it a game. Nevertheless, we can conceive of games. We do so because we can grasp that some- thing is a game when it possesses enough of some range of properties, none of them either necessary or sufficient for gamehood. No game possesses all the properties associated with games. Something is a game if it possesses a sufficient number of a certain range of properties.

The concept of a culture is a family resemblance concept. A culture is simply a collection of people who share a certain range of cultural traits. Perhaps no member of the culture has all of the traits associated with the culture. Consider, for example, Canadian culture. It is to be defined in terms of a set of cultural traits, including but not limited to being pas- sionate about ice hockey, being suspicious of American foreign policy, valuing universal health care, having an opinion about the future of the CBC Canadian Broadcasting Corporation , knowing some of the words to Oh, Canada, being committed to parliamentary democracy, caring about a new book by Margaret Atwood, and so on.

There is such a thing as Canadian culture, even if no individual possesses all of the cultural characteristics just listed. Anyone who possesses enough of these charac- teristics counts as participating in Canadian culture. Such an individual is an insider relative to Canadian culture and an outsider relative to others.

I am not in the least fussy about how people divide up cultures. I am quite happy to allow that any group of people, each of whom has a signific- ant subset of some set of cultural traits including language, knowledge of artistic genres, religion, customs, and so on , counts as a culture. Most people will belong to several cultures at a time. Navajo cul- ture would be an example. Some cultures will lack such a base. African- American culture is an example of such a culture.

I am quite happy to countenance talk of gay culture or deaf culture. The culture of gay men can be defined in terms of a range of practices, customs, and beliefs, many of which are possessed by each homosexual man. These traits include an unusually extensive knowledge of Judy Garland movies, own- ing an uncommonly natty wardrobe, being able to tell whether some- thing is chartreuse, owning some spandex, and so forth.

As is the case with national cultures, no member of gay culture to be fair, I have identified traits of a certain gay subculture has all of these traits but any given individual will have some of them.


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Someone could still object that there will be hard cases where it is difficult to say whether or not someone is an insider or an outsider relative to a given culture. This is certainly true. Nevertheless, even if sometimes it is difficult to determine whether someone is an insider or an outsider, on other occasions it is perfectly clear who is who. When Paul Simon gets off an airplane in South Africa, and proceeds to appro- priate the music of the townships, he is clearly an outsider.

Or imagine an Anglo-Australian painter, born and raised in the suburbs of Melbourne and trained at the Victorian College of the Arts. If this person starts painting in the style of the Ganalbingu people, we can be quite sure that he is an outsider for the purposes of determining whether cultural appro- priation has occurred. In writing The No. The claim that he is engaged in subject appropriation is uncontroversial.

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In denying that cultures can be defined in terms of necessary and sufficient conditions I am treading on some sensitive territory. One can argue that at least one necessary condition must be satisfied before some- one counts as sharing in certain cultures. One could hold that certain cultures are tied to certain ethnic groups.

One might hold, for example, that a person cannot be a member of African-American culture without having an African genetic heritage. The argument would begin with the premise that only individuals who have had certain experiences can be- long to the culture. The next premise would state that these experiences are only available to people with a certain ethnic background.

Certainly this premise is plausible in certain cases. One can argue that only people with a certain complexion can have had the experience of persistent, lifelong discrimination in America. In general, however, linking culture and ethnicity is dubious. Cer- tainly many cultures have nothing to do with ethnicity. A variety of people of diverse ethnic backgrounds may yet share in the same culture. Some- one can fully participate in English culture and yet be an ethnic Greek, Jew, or Pakistani. People with the same ethnic background can be cul- turally diverse.

For example, two Americans of African descent can have the same ethnic background but have different cultures. The other might be a Boston lawyer who attends early music concerts and Bruins home games. On many ways of individuating cultures, these two individuals will turn out to belong to different cultural groups. Moreover, an ethnic group is just as fluid and rough-edged as is any culture.

Refer- ence to ethnicity will not introduce any precision into talk about cultures. As is apparent by now, I have chosen to frame the debate about appro- priation in terms of appropriation from a culture. Sometimes, however, a culture may be more or less coextensive with another sort of entity. This might be a nation say, Iceland or the Navajo nation or a clan say an Australian aboriginal clan such as the Wamba Wamba or Ganalbingu.

Talking of appropriation from nations or clans has certain advantages over talking of cultural appropriation. It may be possible to specify by reference to citizenship records or clan membership lists precisely who does or does not belong to a group. There may then be no controversy about who is affected by an act of cultural appropriation. I prefer to conceive of the issue under consideration as appropriation from a culture. Talk of cultural appropriation captures more accurately what is at issue than does talk of appropriation from a nation, a clan, or anything else.

This is the case for two reasons. For a start, many nations are multicultural. An act of appropriation can happen within the bound- aries of a nation, and yet be a case of cultural appropriation. As well, some cultures for example, African-American or Yiddish culture do not have a corresponding nation or clan. Nothing is lost by speaking of appropri- ation from cultures. Generally, a nation or clan will have a distinctive culture. Consequently, talk about cultural appropriation will encompass those cases where something is appropriated from a clan or nation. Objections to Cultural Appropriation We now have some understanding of the concept of cultural appropri- ation.

Turn now to the question of how one might object to the practice of the various forms of cultural appropriation. As noted above, one might object to cultural appropriation on either aesthetic or moral grounds. In this section I will begin by considering the moral objections that could be brought against cultural appropriation. I suggest that an act of cultural appropriation may be wrong in two ways.

It may cause unjustifiable harm or it may be unjustifiably offensive. Acts of cultural appropriation could cause harm in at least two ways. Someone could appropriate some- thing that belongs to members of another culture. That is, some acts of cultural appropriation could be acts of theft. On the other hand, cultural appropriation could harm members of a culture without depriving them of anything they own.

The economic, educational, or other opportu- nities of insiders could be set back. Worst of all, perhaps, their ability to preserve their culture could be restricted. One did not necessarily act wrongly when one engaged in appropriation. In its original use, the word usually referred to taking something from nature. An individual who picked an apple in the wild was said to have appropriated it. The apple was in a state of nature, that is, without an owner. Most philosophers have thought that anyone who appropriates an apple from a state of nature does not act wrongly under most circumstances.

Some appropriation, of course, is suspect. If I take as my own an apple that belongs to you, and I do so without your per- mission, then a prima facie reason exists for thinking that I have acted wrongly. Note, we have only a prima facie reason for thinking so. I may be justified in taking an apple from your orchard, without your permis- sion, if only by doing so can I save the life of a child.

Some acts of appropriation are permissible, while others are not. The same can be said about acts of cultural appropriation. It is easy to identify some instances of cultural appropriation that are plainly unob- jectionable. A tourist from Japan walks into a shop in Darwin or Santa Fe and buys a painting by an indigenous artist. In such a case, almost always nothing objectionable has occurred. This is an example of benign object appropriation. I assume that the artist voluntarily chose to sell the work.

He was not coerced overtly or by financial circumstances. I also assume that the art dealer had the authority to sell the painting. We would have a case of unobjectionable content appropriation. On the other hand, it is easy to give examples of appropriation that are obviously wrong. Consider, for example, the appropriation of the great works of art produced for the Oba King of Benin.

Perhaps unwisely, the struggle of the Edo people as they call themselves to maintain their independence included the ambush of a British vice-consul. The ensuing punitive expedition of resulted in the seizure of virtually all of the bronzes. These are now found in museums and private collections around the world. Many are in the British Museum.

Some were sold back to Nigeria after it became independent. The present whereabouts of these bronzes is unclear. As is universally believed by international jurists, and is besides pretty obvious, works of art are not lawful plunder or spoils of war. The appropriation of these sculptures was morally equivalent to a bank heist.

The case of the Zuni War God figurines provides us with another clear case of immoral cultural appropriation. Each year members of the Zuni people of the American south west commission the carving of two War Gods or Ahayu:da , which are believed to guide and protect the tribe. At the end of a year, the figurines are taken into the wilderness and left exposed to the elements.

The Zuni people believe that the War Gods must be allowed to decay so that their powers may return to the earth. Crucially, the figurines were not abandoned. I will discuss the appropriation of abandoned property in Chapter 3. Over the years, anthropologists and others recovered many of the figurines and they found their way into museums and private collections.

This was clearly wrong. Fortunately, this story has a happy ending. The rights of the Zuni have been recognized by American courts. Most of the figurines have now been repatriated. The appropriation of the Benin bronzes and the Zuni Ahayu:da are straightforward examples of the first way in which acts of cultural appro- priation can be wrong. They can be acts of theft. The Edo and the Zuni owned works of art that were taken without their permission. The Edo 14 For an account of this travesty, see Greenfield , pp. The Zuni claim is straightforward: acting through political institutions, they bought and paid for the sculptures in question.

The Edo claim on the bronzes is more complex since the works were origin- ally the private property of the Oba. Their claim to the bronzes will have to be based on a strategy explored in Chapter 3. This strategy begins with the claim that the value of some item to all members of a culture can give the culture as a whole a claim on the item in question. The cases of appropriation from the Zuni and Edo cultures are both examples of object appropriation. Several writers have advanced the view that certain acts of content appropriation are acts of theft.

Lenore Keeshig- Tobias, a Native American author and storyteller, has written about the retelling of traditional aboriginal stories by non-aboriginal authors. Similarly, the critic Ralph J. In any case, they have no moral right to use it. The same point could be made in terms of African-American and mainstream American culture.

Similar arguments have been directed against the appropriation of elements of aboriginal art by non-aboriginal Australians. Even acts of subject appropriation have been regarded as acts of theft. Gleason, quoted in Rudinow , p. This implies that a subject matter belongs to members of the culture. I have already expressed skepticism about the view that a subject matter can be owned. Not all acts of theft across cultural boundaries are of interest to us. Imagine, for example, that a Frenchman or a Brazilian that is, someone who comes from a culture other than my own breaks into my house and makes off with some etchings I have made.

This is just common-or- garden-variety theft. The fact that the thief is from one culture and the victim from another is not relevant in analyzing what is wrong about the act.

Or suppose that I have recorded a CD of my original composi- tions and a pirate edition is brought out in China. The fact that the pirates belong to a different culture is not really an interesting feature of the act of piracy. If my copyright had been violated by some criminals who are culturally indistinguishable from me, their act would be just as wrong, and wrong for the same reasons.

In order for an act of theft to be wrong qua act of cultural appropri- ation, it has to be stolen from a culture, not from an individual member of the culture. The appropriation of the Benin bronzes was wrong, qua act of cultural appropriation, if something was stolen from an entire culture. I will not consider cases such as the exploitation of individual musicians by large corporations. Linda was a Zulu from South Africa and the corporation that apparently violated his rights to the song was Amer- ican.

Here, however, we just have a case of an individual being exploited by a large corporation. We do not have to characterize the appropriation as an act of cultural appropriation to know that it is wrong. Similarly, I will not discuss the exploitation of pioneering African-American blues artists by non-African-American individuals and corporations. I have in mind, for example, the apparent exploitation of Muddy Waters by Leonard Chess. No one is likely to defend the appropriation of the Benin bronzes or the appropriation of the Zuni War God figurines. Certainly I will not.

Sometimes acts of theft are defensible. A father may steal a loaf of bread from someone with lots of bread if it is the only way to feed his chil- dren. He does not act wrongly. The father is excused by necessity. Here, as elsewhere in this essay, I am concerned with moral, not legal, ques- tions. That is, I am interested in the question of when cultural appropri- ation is morally wrong, not when it is illegal.

Legality varies from culture to culture. Morality is universal. I find it difficult to imagine a scenario where an act of cultural appropriation can similarly be excused by neces- sity. Perhaps one could construct some far-fetched cases where artists can only support their families by violating property rights of a culture other than their own.

I will discount this possibility and regard any instance of cultural appropriation that is an act of theft as wrong. The trick will be to determine which acts of cultural appropriation are acts of theft from a culture. In order to make this determination we need to determine how and when a culture as a whole has a claim on ownership of a work of art.

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A large part of Chapter 3 will be devoted to an exploration of how a culture can acquire ownership of a work of art or of artistic elements. This chapter will also investigate what sorts of things a culture can own. If a culture owns some property, the only remaining question is that of whether a competent authority within the culture has freely sanctioned the transfer of the item to someone outside the culture. When a competent authority within a culture freely sanc- tions the transfer of some property to members of another culture, no theft has occurred.

When we are considering cultural appropriation qua harmful act of theft, philosophically interesting questions arise in two ways. Both sorts of questions arise from the supposition that a culture owns some work of art or an artistic element and so its appropriation by outsiders, without the permission of a competent authority, is wrong.

This claim could be challenged in two philosophically interesting ways. In the first, one might hold that, although the item claimed by a culture is the sort of thing that it might own, in fact it is not the owner. As we will see, a number of interesting and difficult questions arise when we ask whether a culture owns some item.

Particularly interesting questions arise when we consider the ownership of traditional stories, styles, designs, patterns, and so on. For an example of the first sort of case, consider the appropriation of the Parthenon Marbles. Elgin had a permit from the Turkish governor, but many people say that he was not competent to grant permission. They claim that the rightful owner was Greek culture. Let us consider this claim. The trouble is that the Marbles were not originally the property of Greek culture. The Parthe- non was an Athenian civic building. Ancient Athenians would have rejected out of hand the proposition that Greek culture as a whole had a claim on the temple or its friezes.

Nevertheless, one hears the suggestion that the Marbles now belong to Greek culture and they were wrongfully appropriated. In the eighteenth century Arne Magnussen, an ex-patriot Icelander, bought the manuscript fairly so far as anyone knows and gave it to the University of Copenha- gen. It was the property of some individual and no one in Iceland cared much about it. Now it is considered to be the property of Icelandic culture and Iceland successfully lobbied for its return to the island. In the other philosophically interesting cases questions arise about whether something is the sort of thing that a culture can own.

Some of the most interesting and controversial cases of cultural appropriation involve the use by outsiders of styles, patterns, designs, plots, and motifs that insiders regard as the property of their culture.

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Questions about what can be owned can arise because different cultures have different legal regimes. In cultures where ownership of intellectual property is governed by the principles of the Berne Convention, something like a general plot, style, pattern, or design cannot be owned. As well, only something with an identifiable creator can be owned and ownership that is, copyright expires after a term.

In some cultures, in contrast, certain traditional stories whose originators are unknown are held to be the collective property of the culture. In some aboriginal Australian cultures styles and designs are regarded as the property of a clan. Some 20 For the con side of this legal debate see Merryman For the pro side see Moustakas These questions will be addressed in Chapter 3.

Insiders could be harmed by means other than theft and I will turn to an examination of other forms of harm in Chapter 4. In simple cases, cultural appropriation could wrongfully interfere with the economic, educational, or other opportunities of insiders. In more complex and potentially serious cases, cultural appropriation could harm people by harming their culture. Arguably, this is a much more serious sort of harm than any theft could be. Theft could contribute to the undermin- ing of a culture.

Just as the sort of harm discussed in Chapter 3 may be classified as a sort of theft, the sort of harm discussed in Chapter 4 may be regarded as analogous to assault or battery. He maintains that the preser- vation of a cultural identity is absolutely essential. The question at issue is how cultural appropriation could harm a culture and perhaps even threaten its viability. Several lines of argument can be identified.

The first sort of argument focuses on what I have called subject ap- propriation. This argument begins with the premise that outsiders who engage in subject appropriation are bound to misrepresent insiders and their culture. These misrepresentations can be harmful in a variety of ways. Most obviously, outsiders could create or perpetuate harmful stereotypes that hurt members of a culture. For example, old Hollywood Westerns represent Native Americans as cruel and mendacious.

Distorting stereo- types could harm members of a culture in several ways. Members of the culture could be subjected to discrimination in employment or education. This could, in turn, give rise to economic problems that 21 Kymlicka , p. Most insidiously, insiders could begin to see themselves as others see them and their culture can be distorted.

Content appropriation could have similar harmful effects. Imagine that outsiders clumsily appropriate the styles of insiders. More subtle but ultimately, perhaps, more dangerous sorts of harm may result if outsiders appropriate artistic elements from insiders. Imagine that mem- bers of a large culture start to perform music characteristic of a small minority culture.

Imagine, however, that the outsiders perform the music in a way that is subtly, or perhaps not so subtly, different from the ways in which the insiders perform. Under these circumstances, there is a danger that members of the minority culture, exposed to performances by outsiders, will begin to perform as the outsiders do. The distinctness of the minority culture may, consequently, be eroded.

Cultural appropriation could also harm by depriving insiders of audi- ences for their works of art. Potentially both the content appropriation and subject appropriation could deprive insiders of an audience. The argument would be that audience members will devote their attention to a limited number of works of a given genre. The genre might be characterized in terms of its subject matter.

So one could argue that the market for books or films about Australian aboriginal peoples is strictly limited. Each time outsiders produce a work on this subject, one could go on to maintain, the probability that works by insiders on this subject will find an audience is decreased. Similarly, one could maintain that works in a given style, say a jazz style such as bebop or the blues, have only a limited audience. If so, when outsiders appropriate content, they harm insiders by depriving them of an audience and the economic benefits of this audience.

The general conclusion of Chapters 3 and 4 is that some instances of cultural appropriation wrongfully cause harm to individual members of a culture. I am skeptical about the suggestion that significant harm is done to cultures as a whole. Much cultural appropriation is completely benign. Indeed, as I will suggest later in this chapter, some of it has a great deal of social value, including value for cultures from which something is appropriated, and this must be taken into account when assessing acts of cultural appropriation.

Even if an act of cultural appropriation is not harmful, it might still be wrong. Acts of theft are clear cases of harm. To deprive people of property that is rightfully theirs is to harm them by hindering them in the pursuit of their ends. If people are deprived of their culture, they are also, perhaps more seriously, harmed. An act of cultural appropriation may, however, not deprive insiders of their culture. Their artistic prac- tices may not be distorted by the activities of outsiders.

Still, insiders may find acts of cultural appropriation offensive. Insiders may be put into an unpleasant state of mind when they are aware that outsiders are appropriating their culture. They may be appalled, disgusted, insulted, or outraged. If certain acts of appropriation are an affront to their culture, we may say that the actions are profoundly offensive.

An act of cultural appropriation could be offensive for a variety of reasons. It might be sacrilegious. The manner in which outsiders have used materials may be inappropriate by the standards of insiders. For example, symbols with religious significance might be used disrespect- fully. This is not neces- sarily a case of offensive cultural appropriation. It is intended simply as an example of how use of a religious symbol can be offensive to mem- bers of a culture, in this case Christian culture.

Alternatively, an act of appropriation could be offensive because it misrepresents the culture of insiders. Above I mentioned the possibility that subject appropriation could harmfully misrepresent a culture. Even if the culture and its mem- bers are not harmed by a representation that distorts the culture, it could still be insulting and offensive. The production by outsiders of perform- ances or artworks in the style of insiders may in itself be offensive. For example, some Australian aboriginal cultures regard the representa- tion of certain stories by outsiders as deeply offensive.

In these cultures only properly initiated persons are allowed to paint certain subjects. In Chapter 5 I will consider the case against cultural appropri- ation that is based on the premise that it can be profoundly offensive. Consideration of profound offence will not yield a general case against cultural appropriation. Many acts of cultural appropriation are not pro- foundly offensive. Others are profoundly offensive but nevertheless morally unobjectionable. Usually this will be because artists have violated certain reasonable time and place restrictions.

Notice that sometimes the moral case against cultural appropriation rests on an aesthetic premise. An argument for the immorality of act of appropriation can depend, for example, on the claim that the act results in a work of art that harmfully distorts a culture. Or an argument against cultural appropriation can depend on the claim that outsiders will or will tend to, or will inevitably produce works that expose insiders to ridicule.

Since the moral case against cultural appropriation can depend on an aesthetic premise, Chapter 2 of this essay is devoted to considering the aesthetic case against cultural appropriation. Quite independently of any moral implications, the question of whether artists can success- fully appropriate styles and other artistic content from other cultures is interesting.

The aesthetic case against cultural appropriation can often be summed up in a single word. Works produced by cultural appropriation are, in some sense of the word, inauthentic. Perhaps a musician, born and raised in some middle-class suburb, somehow cannot authentically perform the blues. Or a Anglo-Australian painter cannot authentically paint in the style of some aboriginal culture. Perhaps novelists somehow cannot authentically capture the lives and experience of members of other cul- tures.

In Chapter 2 I will investigate the senses in which works of art that arise out of cultural appropriation might be inauthentic. I will go on to consider how each sense of authenticity affects the aesthetic properties of artworks that involve cultural appropriation. I will arrive at the conclusion that, in most senses of the word relevant to the aesthetic evaluation of artworks, there is no reason why artists who engage in cultural appropriations cannot produce authentic works.

In Praise of Cultural Appropriation Cultural appropriation, it will emerge in this essay, is not something about which it is easy to generalize. Sometimes cultural appropriation is theft. Some acts of cultural appropriation are clearly wrong because they give rise to works of art that are harmful in other ways. Sometimes the very act of engaging in cultural appropriation can be wrong because it is profoundly offensive. Some works of art are aesthetic failures precisely because an artist has appropriated content in a clumsy and ineffective manner.

Other artists appropriate content and create masterpieces. A goal of this essay is to show that there can be no blanket condemna- tion of cultural appropriation. This is important, I believe, because cultural appropriation is important to the flourishing of the arts in the contemporary world. Let me give a few examples of how cultural appropriation can lead to the production of valuable works of art. The transfer of general ideas and styles from culture to culture bears valuable fruit and is found in surprising locations.

African-Americans often complain about the appro- priation of jazz and blues music but African-American musicians some- times engage in style appropriation of their own. This is one of the master- pieces of jazz and was, for a time, the best selling jazz album ever recorded. Since Hancock did not acknowledge his borrowings, few peo- ple know that he drew upon the music of an African culture. This is not an isolated case. Hancock was definitely engaged in cultural appropri- ation. Indeed, he was engaged in unusually interesting and creative appropriation. Everyone has an interest in encouraging such creative appropriation.

It won a Grammy in and sold over 4 million copies. Theodore Gracyk discusses another multiply iterated case of cultural appropriation in popular music. This appropriation from an African-American singer by members of main- stream American culture proved controversial at the time. It was based on a Southern folksong that Leadbelly had learned from his uncle, Terrance Ledbetter.

This song was, in turn, an arrangement of a waltz by the African- American composer Gussie Lord Davis in the s. Davis wrote for a largely white audience and the folksong Leadbelly learned from his uncle had been, in all probability, transmitted via non-members of African- American culture. Of course, Davis had appropriated the waltz form from Viennese musicians.

This merging of consumer and high versions of Modernist culture led to a radical transformation of the meaning of "Modernism". First, it implied that a movement based on the rejection of tradition had become a tradition of its own. Second, it demonstrated that the distinction between elite Modernist and mass consumerist culture had lost its precision. Some writers [ who? Many have interpreted this transformation as the beginning of the phase that became known as postmodernism. For others, such as art critic Robert Hughes , postmodernism represents an extension of modernism. Such movements see modernism as reductionist , and therefore subject to an inability to see systemic and emergent effects.

Many modernists came to this viewpoint, for example Paul Hindemith in his late turn towards mysticism. Writers such as Paul H. Instead, they argue, individual creativity should make everyday life more emotionally acceptable. Some traditionalist artists like Alexander Stoddart reject modernism generally as the product of "an epoch of false money allied with false culture". In some fields, the effects of modernism have remained stronger and more persistent than in others.

Visual art has made the most complete break with its past. Most major capital cities have museums devoted to modern art as distinct from post- Renaissance art c.

interpretation and construction art speech and the law new directions in aesthetics Manual

These galleries make no distinction between modernist and Postmodernist phases, seeing both as developments within Modern Art. The ground motive of modernism, Graff asserts, was criticism of the nineteenth-century bourgeois social order and its world view. Its artistic strategy was the self-conscious overturning of the conventions of bourgeois realism [ Each of the types of repetition that we have examined is not limited to the mass media but belongs by right to the entire history of artistic creativity; plagiarism , quotation, parody, the ironic retake are typical of the entire artistic-literary tradition.

Much art has been and is repetitive. The concept of absolute originality is a contemporary one, born with Romanticism; classical art was in vast measure serial, and the "modern" avant-garde at the beginning of this century challenged the Romantic idea of "creation from nothingness," with its techniques of collage , mustachios on the Mona Lisa , art about art, and so on. Stravinsky's genius developed through phases of recapitulation.

He took from Machaut , Gesualdo , Monteverdi. He mimed Tchaikovsky and Gounod , the Beethoven piano sonatas, the symphonies of Haydn , the operas of Pergolesi and Glinka. He incorporated Debussy and Webern into his own idiom. In each instance the listener was meant to recognize the source, to grasp the intent of a transformation which left salient aspects of the original intact. The history of Picasso is marked by retrospection. In 20th-century literature, the elements of reprise have been obsessive, and they have organized precisely those texts which at first seemed most revolutionary.

The Waste Land , Ulysses , Pound's Cantos are deliberate assemblages, in-gatherings of a cultural past felt to be in danger of dissolution. The long sequence of imitations, translations, masked quotations, and explicit historical paintings in Robert Lowell 's History has carried the same technique into the s. The new, even at its most scandalous, has been set against an informing background and framework of tradition.

Stravinsky, Picasso, Braque, Eliot , Joyce , Pound —the 'makers of the new'—have been neo-classics, often as observant of canonic precedent as their 17th-century forebears. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other uses of the word, see Modernism disambiguation. For the period in sociology beginning with industrialization, see Modernity. Related terms are modern , contemporary , and postmodern. Philosophical and art movement late 19th — early 20th century. See also: Late modernism. Main articles: Pop art and Western painting.

Main articles: Minimalism , Minimal music , Literary minimalism , Postminimalism , and 20th-century Western painting. Main articles: Collage , Assemblage art , and Installation art. Main article: Neo-Dada. Main articles: Performance art , Happening , and Fluxus. Main article: Intermedia. Main article: Fluxus. Main article: Late modernism. This section needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources.

Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. Four French Symbolists. Greenwood Press , Tansey, and Diane Kirkpatrick. Accessed on 8 February Language and Psychoanalysis. Archived from the original PDF on 8 October These world-historical processes have nourished an amazing variety of visions and ideas that aim to make men and women the subjects as well as the objects of modernization, to give them the power to change the world that is changing them, to make their way through the maelstrom and make it their own.

Over the past century, these visions and values have come to be loosely grouped together under the name of 'modernism'. Where Have All the Fascists Gone? Ashgate Publishing, Ltd. Marion Wynne-Davies. Metaphysics Research Lab, Stanford University. Ian Allan Publishing. Butt The Directory of Railway Stations. Yeovil: Patrick Stephens. Bartky January Technology and Culture 30 1 : 25— New York: Norton, , pp. Calhoun Classical Sociological Theory. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, pp. Spring—Summer, , pp. Linda R. London: Bloomsbury, , pp. Abrams , A Glossary of Literary Terms. New York: Harcourt Brace, , p.

Eliot "Tradition and the individual talent" , in Selected Essays. Paperback edition. Rochester, NY: Boydell Press, Northwestern Univ. The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, , pp. In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. Sherrill E. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, , p. Sokel, The Writer in Extremis. General Services Administration. Archived from the original PDF on 31 March Retrieved 18 February New York: Columbia University Press, Credo Reference. The New York Times. Retrieved 21 July Mies van der Rohe, one of the great figures of 20th-century architecture.

Encyclopedia Britannica. Hugh Brigstocke. Oxford University Press, Grove Art Online. Oxford University Press , Accessed 15 March , GroveArt. American Literature , Volume 73, Number 4, December pp.

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Modernist Cultures , Volume 6, pp. Exploring 20th Century London. Retrieved 28 April Les heures de James Joyce. Diffusion PUF. Ivanov, Unknown Socialist Realism. The Leningrad School , pp. Oxford: Oxford University Press, , pp. Ithaca, N. Dada Turns Red. University of Edinburgh Press. A history of the uneasy relations between Surrealists and Communists from the s through the s.

David Scott Kastan. Dinah Birch. Oxford University Press Inc. Oxford Reference Online. Alison Latham. John Wilson Foster. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, Retrieved 27 January Archived from the original on 23 August Armstrong and C. Routledge, New Haven: Yale University Press. Retrieved on 16 August In: McNally, Rand. Illinois Sesquicentennial Commission. University of Virginia, Henry Moore: Space, Sculpture, Politics.

Burlington, Vermont: Ashgate, Retrieved 28 October Retrieved 22 July Retrieved 4 May Retrieved 23 April American Painting. Part Two: The Twentieth Century. Modern Language Quarterly 76 3 : — Edited by William J. University of Hawai'i Press, , [1]. The Japan Times. Archived from the original on 26 January Paul Griffiths. London: Penguin, New York: Basic Books.

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The Guardian. Robert Archambeau. Armstrong, Carol and de Zegher, Catherine eds. The Avant-Garde and the Other , Nordlit. Baker, Houston A. Second ed. London: Penguin , Brush, Stephen G. Flammarion, Published in association with The Open University. London: Harper and Row , Ltd. Gates, Henry Louis. Levenson, Michael, ed. Lewis, Pericles. Routledge, London, Sass, Louis A. Cited in Bauer, Amy Schorske, Carl. Vintage, Modanizumu: Modernist Fiction from Japan, — University of Hawai'i Press, Van Loo, Sofie ed.

Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Antwerp , Anna Akhmatova Richard Aldington W. Robert Desnos T. Antihumanism Empiricism Rationalism Scientism. You are welcome to consult your lecturer about any questions you may have about course material or organisation. Lecturers have walk in hours each week during which they are available for consultation without appointment. It is also possible to make an appointment for another time should you need to do so.

The Philosophy of Art. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, Second edition. ISBN: Recommended especially for students who have not previously taken any courses in Philosophy :. Please familiarise yourself with the specified readings and come to lectures and tutorials prepared to discuss them. Oxford Handbook of Aesthetics. Levinson ed. GL Encyclopedia of Aesthetics , Michael Kelly ed.

Oxford: Oxford University Press, E-book accessed via Library. Routledge Companion to Aesthetics. London: Routledge, A Companion to Aesthetics. Cooper eds. Malden: Wiley-Blackwell, Olsen eds. FA Contemporary Debates in Aesthetics and the Philosophy of Art. Kieran ed. Blackwell Guide to Aesthetics. Kivy ed. Blackwell Companion to Aesthetics , David Cooper ed.

Oxford: Blackwell, GL Reference The Encyclopedia of Philosophy , Donald M. Borchert ed. GL Reference E26 Young ed. London: Routledge, 4 Vols, GL Reference C88 Also available as e-resource. The Aesthetics Research Group at the University of Kent has a public archive of recorded lectures in aesthetics:. What Is Art For? Seattle: University of Washington Press , excerpt pp.

Focus on pp. ISBN Originally in What Is Art?