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    Hegel on modern art

    Kiernan, Sarah Loselani (2023) Hegel on modern art. PhD thesis, Birkbeck, University of London.

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    This doctoral thesis will endeavour to show that the aesthetic system of G.W.F. Hegel can both incorporate and elucidate modern and contemporary art. It will address the major aspects of Hegel's aesthetics that seem to conflict with the artistic developments of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. The most prominent of these, and the topic of the first chapter, is Hegel's infamous 'end of art' thesis. Several publications of note have disputed the legitimacy of the Hegelian 'end of art' thesis: I expand upon these recent developments in Hegelian scholarship and assert that any significant 'end' within Hegel's historical narrative does not prevent the continued development of art. The second chapter argues that Hegel's triadic categorisation of art is both comprehensive and capable of integrating modern and contemporary art. The third chapter explores the tension between general abstraction and immanent historical description within Hegel's philosophy of art to address objections regarding the seemingly strict chronology of the forms of art and the prejudice and Eurocentrism that this seems to entail. The fourth chapter focuses on the role of beauty in Hegel's philosophy and invalidates the idea that this prevents its application to modern art. The fifth chapter replies to criticism that Hegel's aesthetics eliminates the role of the subject and appeases the concern that Hegel's postulation of a universal artistic content limits the capacity for a richness or multiplicity of interpretation, which has come to be highly valued in postmodern art criticism. Finally, the sixth chapter engages with contemporary art as part of the Hegelian aesthetic system and presents a uniquely Hegelian understanding of significant trends in the contemporary artworld.


    Item Type: Thesis
    Copyright Holders: The copyright of this thesis rests with the author, who asserts his/her right to be known as such according to the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988. No dealing with the thesis contrary to the copyright or moral rights of the author is permitted.
    Depositing User: Acquisitions And Metadata
    Date Deposited: 07 Feb 2023 12:20
    Last Modified: 01 Nov 2023 16:01


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