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Croatian Journal of Philosophy

Volume 21, Issue 1, 2021
Aethetics and Philosophy of Art

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aesthetics and philosophy of art
1. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
Iris Vidmar Jovanović Introduction
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2. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
Elisa Caldarola Architecture and Sites: A Lesson from the Categorisation of Artworks
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Several contemporary architects have designed architectural objects that are closely linked to their particular sites. An in-depth study of the relevant relationship holding between those objects and their sites is, however, missing. This paper addresses the issue, arguing that those architectural objects are akin to works of site-specific art. In section (1), I introduce the topic of the paper. In section (2), I critically analyse the debate on the categorisation of artworks as site-specific. In section (3), I apply to architecture the lesson learned from the analysis of the art debate.
3. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
Alexandra Dias Fortes Aldo Rossi: “My Architecture Stands Mute and Cold”
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Aldo Rossi offers a captivating account of the relationship between human life and material forms. Rossi says that he came to “the great questions”, and to his discovery of Ludwig Wittgenstein and Georg Trakl through Adolf Loos (Rossi 1982: 46). I will outline some connections between Loos, Trakl and Wittgenstein that might help us to grasp the way in which Rossi’s assertive attitude concerning architecture gradually leans towards “forgetting architecture”. (The goal is not to try and justify how they might have influenced Rossi; rather the aim is to try to understand Rossi’s work with those connections as a backdrop; to outline a constellation of affinities.) The running thread being the internal relation between the object and the subject, i.e., “construction and the artist’s own life” (Lombardo 2003: 97). I will conclude by considering architectural form on the page, that is to say, in Rossi’s plans, “a graphic variation of the handwritten manuscript”, and drawings, “where a line is no longer a line, but writing” (Rossi 1981: 6), and finally by considering what he says about his architecture, namely, that it stands “mute and cold,” tough it will still “creak” (Rossi 1981: 44), and give rise to “new meanings”.
4. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
Polona Tratnik Art Addressing Consumerism in the Age of Late Capitalism
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The globalized world is still in the phase of late capitalism, signified by the establishment of multinational corporations, globalized markets and work, mass consumerism and the fluid flow of capital. The question of the criticism of art towards the capitalist system, its ideology and consumerism is therefore still current and is readdressed in this contribution. Considering this issue, the recurrent theoretical reference is American materialist aesthetician Fredric Jameson, who was among the first to define culture and art in the context of late capitalism. In the article the author revises Jameson’s critique of art addressing consumerism and demonstrates that he did not consider the relevance of the means of consumption as regards the cultural logic of late capitalism. She claims that in order to open space to examine contemporary art as being critical towards consumerism, one also needs to consider the ontological changes that have occurred to art and pay attention to performative art, while Jameson was still focused on a representational mode of art. By being performative and also setting out actions outside of spaces that were traditionally designed for art, in the space meant for consumption, art has much a better chance to act politically, which Jameson wished to see from art which addresses consumerism, but did not. The author argues that if one is to seek critical or political art in late capitalism, those would be the cases of artistic interventions into the means of consumption.
5. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
Elena Abate Fashion as an Aesthetic Form of Life: A Wittgensteinian Interpretation
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Fashion is an aesthetic practice which concerns the ordinary sphere of our life: it is associated with everydayness and it is a source of endless aesthetic experiences. The purpose of this paper is to validate a new perspective on fashion based on Wittgenstein’s later aesthetic conception. In Philosophical Perspectives on Fashion (2017), Matteucci introduces the idea of combining the Wittgensteinian concept of “form of life” with fashion. In accordance with this thesis, the paper aims at showing how fashion is constituted as a “form of life”. Specifically, I shall argue that fashion is an “aesthetics form of life” which structurally employs a language of an aesthetic type ––one with a specific grammar (or set of rules) of its own. I claim that there is in fashion a contact point between the grammar of language and socially encoded aesthetic responses: fashion follows slavishly its own grammar, through its cyclical seasonality, while at the same time tending to creatively reinvent itself. Thus, anyone who daily commits to the practices of fashion acquires sensitivity to its rules, contributing to a social dialectic of identification/diversification typically belonging to fashion itself. Finally, on the basis of the claim that fashion is a “form of life”, and indeed since fashion is primarily an aesthetic practice, I claim that Wittgenstein’s aesthetic notions can coherently be related to fashion as well: concepts such as ‘aesthetic reaction’, ‘gesture’, and ‘correctness’ will be shown to be crucial to an analysis of the aesthetic phenomenon of fashion.
6. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
David Collins Davies and Levinson on the Musical Expression of Emotion: What’s the Problem?
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Stephen Davies and Jerrold Levinson have each offered accounts of how music can express emotions. Davies’s ‘Appearance Emotionalism’ holds that music can be expressive of emotion due to a resemblance between its dynamic properties and those of human behaviour typical of people feeling that emotion, while Levinson’s ‘Hypothetical Emotionalism’ contends that a piece is expressive when it can be heard as the expression of the emotion of a hypothetical agent or imagined persona. These have been framed as opposing positions but I show that, on one understanding of ‘expressing’ which they seem to share, each entails the other and so there is no real debate between them. However, Levinson’s account can be read according to another—and arguably more philosophically interesting—understanding of ‘expressing’ whereas Davies’s account cannot as easily be so read. I argue that this reading of Hypothetical Emotionalism can account for much of our talk about music in terms of emotions but must answer another question—viz., how composers or performers can express emotions through music—to explain this relation between music and emotion. I suggest that this question can be answered by drawing on R. G. Collingwood’s theory of artistic expression.
7. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
Andrew Corsa Learning from Fiction to Change our Personal Narratives
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Can fictional literature help us lead better lives? This essay argues that some works of literature can help us both change our personal narratives and develop new narratives that will guide our actions, enabling us to better achieve our goals. Works of literature can lead us to consider the hypothesis that we might beneficially change our future-oriented, personal narratives. As a case study, this essay considers Ben Lerner’s novel, 10:04, which focuses on humans’ ability to develop new narratives, and which articulates a narrative that takes into account both everyday life and large-scale issues like the global, environmental crisis.
8. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
Philip Mills Doing Things with Words: The Transformative Force of Poetry
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Against the apparent casting away of poetry from contemporary philosophy of language and aesthetics which has left poetry forceless, I argue that poetry has a linguistic, philosophical, and even political force. Against the idea that literature (as novel) can teach us facts about the world, I argue that the force of literature (as poetry) resides in its capacity to change our ways of seeing. First, I contest views which consider poetry forceless by discussing Austin’s and Sartre’s views. Second, I explore the concept of force in the realm of art—focusing on Nietzsche’s philosophy and Menke’s Kraft der Kunst—and the relations between linguistic, artistic, and political forces. Third, I consider how the transformative force of poetry can be considered political by turning to Kristeva’s Revolution in Poetic Language and Meschonnic’s conception of poetry according to which the poem does something to language and the subject. To illustrate this transformative force of poetry, I analyse Caroline Zekri’s poem ‘Un pur rapport grammatical’. I therefore think of poetry not only as doing something with language, but also as doing something to language. To rephrase Austin’s famous title, and thus reverse his evaluation of poetry, poetry might reveal us not only How to Do Things with Words, but how to do things to words and, through this doing, how to transform and affect the world.
9. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
Rafe McGregor A Literary Aesthetics of War Crime
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In order to develop a literary aesthetics of war crime, I examine the phenomenon of moral immunity in military memoir. Using three paradigmatic examples of memoirs of unjust wars characterised by the routine perpetration of war crimes, I argue that moral immunity is achieved by means of three literary devices: literary irresponsibility, ethical peerage, and moral economy. I then employ the proposed literary aesthetics of war crime to provide an answer to the perennial question of the relationship between literature and morality as well as to two specific instantiations of this question, the value interaction debate in literary aesthetics and the ethics of reading in literary theory. My conclusion is that the literary aesthetics of war crime demonstrates both that there is a systematic relationship between aesthetic value and moral value and that there is no systematic relationship between literary ambiguity and moral uncertainty.
10. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
Boran Berčić Art and the Impossible
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In this article author contrasts possibilism (the view that art is about the logically possible and that it cannot be about the impossible) with impossibilism (the view that art can be and sometimes is about the logically impossible as well). Author argues in favor of possibilism. The main insight is that since impossible objects are necessarily non-existent art cannot be about them, it has to be about something that can exist. Also, author formulates five more detailed views about the issue. Further, author discusses related notions like imaginability and conceivability. Author holds that Hume’s insight that an object cannot be conceived as non-existent counts in favour of possibilism. Besides, author introduces the distinction between real and apparent content of the work of art, believing that this distinction can be relevant in the discussion between possibilism and impossibilism. In the rest of the article author analyzes several prima facie counterexamples to possibilism (Jean-Luc Picard, Anna Karenina, paradox of patricide, Escher’s graphics) and tries to explain them away.
11. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
David Pereplyotchik Generative Linguistics Meets Normative Inferentialism: Part 2
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This is the second installment of a two-part essay. Limitations of space prevented the publication of the full essay in a previous issue of the Journal (Pereplyotchik 2020). My overall goal is to outline a strategy for integrating generative linguistics with a broadly pragmatist approach to meaning and communication. Two immensely useful guides in this venture are Robert Brandom and Paul Pietroski. Squarely in the Chomskyan tradition, Pietroski’s recent book, Conjoining Meanings, offers an approach to natural-language semantics that rejects foundational assumptions widely held amongst philosophers and linguists. In particular, he argues against extensionalism—the view that meanings are (or determine) truth and satisfaction conditions. Having arrived at the same conclusion by way of Brandom’s defl ationist account of truth and reference, I’ll argue that both theorists have important contributions to make to a broader anti-extensionalist approach to language. Part 1 of the essay was largely exegetical, laying out what I see as the core aspects of Brandom’s normative inferentialism (1) and Pietroski’s naturalistic semantics (2). Now, in Part 2, I argue that there are many convergences between these two theoretical frameworks and, contrary to first appearances, very few points of substantive disagreement between them. If the integration strategy that I propose is correct, then what appear to be sharply contrasting commitments are better seen as interrelated verbal differences that come down to different—but complementary—explanatory goals. The residual disputes are, however, stubborn. I end by discussing how to square Pietroski’s commitment to predicativism with Brandom’s argument that a predicativist language is in principle incapable of expressing ordinary conditionals.
book reviews
12. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
Matija Rajter Rafe McGregor, Narrative Justice
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13. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
Marin Beroš Tiziana Andina, Petar Bojanić (eds.), Institutions in Action. The Nature and the Role of Institutions in the Real World
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14. Croatian Journal of Philosophy: Volume > 21 > Issue: 1
Nenad Miščević United Nations Development Programme, Human Development Report 2020. The Next Frontier Human Development and the Anthropocene
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