Read Beleza by Roger Scruton Online


Roger Scruton nos convida a refletir a respeito da beleza e do lugar que esta ocupa em nossas vidas. Como deixa bem claro, sua abordagem não é histórica nem psicológica - é filosófica. Assim, nos conduz por questionamentos como - a beleza é subjetiva? Existem critérios válidos para julgar uma obra de arte? Há algum fundamento racional para o gosto? Qual a relação entre traRoger Scruton nos convida a refletir a respeito da beleza e do lugar que esta ocupa em nossas vidas. Como deixa bem claro, sua abordagem não é histórica nem psicológica - é filosófica. Assim, nos conduz por questionamentos como - a beleza é subjetiva? Existem critérios válidos para julgar uma obra de arte? Há algum fundamento racional para o gosto? Qual a relação entre tradição, técnica e gosto? Pode o belo ser imoral? Frente àqueles que consideram que os juízos de beleza são meramente subjetivos, Scruton, com sua verve polêmica, questiona tal relativismo - 'por que estudarmos a herança de nossa arte e cultura numa época em que o julgamento de sua beleza não possui nenhum fundamento racional?'. E com sua contundência característica, declara - 'Neste livro, [...] defendo que [a beleza] é um valor real e universal ancorado em nossa natureza racional [e que] o senso do belo desempenha papel indispensável na formação do nosso mundo'....

Title : Beleza
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9788580331455
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 222 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Beleza Reviews

  • Teresa Proença
    2019-03-28 00:43

    "... a beleza é exigente: é um chamamento para renunciarmos ao nosso narcisismo e olharmos para o mundo com reverência.""Sem uma procura consciente da beleza arriscamo-nos a cair num mundo de prazeres que causam dependência e na banalização dos actos de dessacralização, um mundo em que já não se percebe bem porque vale a pena a vida humana.""O mundo do kitsch é de certa maneira um mundo desumano, onde a emoção é desviada do seu alvo normal para estereótipos adocicados, autorizando-nos a prestar tributo ao amor e à tristeza sem o incómodo de o sentirmos.""Uma marca dos seres racionais é não viverem apenas no presente. São livres de desprezarem o mundo que os rodeia e de viverem de um modo diferente. A arte, a literatura e a música nascidas na nossa civilização lembram os seres humanos desta sua natureza e indicam-lhes o caminho que têm diante de si: o caminho que os conduz não à dessacralização mas ao sagrado e ao sacrificial. É isto, numa palavra, que a beleza nos ensina.""O juízo da beleza põe as emoções e os desejos em ordem. Pode exprimir o prazer e o gosto das pessoas, mas trata-se do prazer naquilo a que dão valor e do gosto pelos seus ideais verdadeiros."Um ensaio muito interessante sobre a Beleza, que Roger Scruton divide em quatro tipos. a beleza humana e o desejo que inspira; a beleza da natureza como estímulo à contemplação; a beleza do quotidiano (arquitectura, jardins, objectos) e o bem estar que proporcionam; a beleza artística como objecto do gosto. Foi uma leitura enriquecedora na medida em que, além de aprender bastante sobre arte, proporcionou-me alguns momentos de reflexão. No entanto, este livro comete um pequeno pecado: no capítulo em que é feita a interacção entre beleza humana e arte, é apenas referida a beleza feminina, quer através do texto, quer das imagens exemplificativas. No meu entender (e suponho que, pelo menos, no de metade da população mundial), o corpo masculino é tão belo como o feminino. Penso que um trabalho deste género deveria ser generalizado e não se focar apenas nos gostos do autor. Até parece que Roger Scruton escreveu este livro só para homens. Corrijo: só para homens que têm medo, sequer, de pensar que os homens são bonitos. É verdade que a Vénus de Sandro Botticelli tira a respiração a qualquer pessoa mas o Sebastian também. Um representa o nascimento e a alegria; o outro a morte e a dor. E ambos estão para além do desejo. Há dias, fiquei embasbacada a olhar para esta beleza:(Jean-Antoine Houdon, Apolo - Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, Lisboa)e, há anos, para esta:(Michelangelo, David - Galeria da Academia de Belas Artes, Florença)quem não ficaria?

  • Ruzz
    2019-04-22 23:56

    This is one of those books you begin loving. Like, say, Jennifer Love Hewitt, then as you spend more time with it you love it less and less. till you can't even really look at it without wanting to kill it. it's hard to kill books, stephen segal, and apparently for the books author, judeo-christian sexual hangups. setting aside for the moment he's clearly one of those academics who runs around the house sunday afternoons in a tweed jacket listening to Wagner and talking about the symbolism of Rothko's "Untitled, Mural for End Wall" for hours on end--I imagine, he mentions none of this in the book-he starts out the book with a wonderful dissection of how to define beauty, and its criteria. He poses an intellectual argument based on thousands of years of bickering and while the argument is mostly baseless the points are interesting.I felt certain within 20 pages he may redefine my thoughts on beauty. Now, I am certain after completing the book he redefined nothing for me aside from my initial excitement being redefined as dismay.Somewhere along the way he transforms the book from discussion of beauty to discussion of his deep fears about ever coming in contact with the unruly and chaotic aspects of life. His disgust at all things overtly sexual, his need to sanitize life and the flesh painfully become the focus of the book rather than beauty. I refuse any description of beauty that does not include entropy, filth, baseness, and reality. Scruton's beauty is a human beauty. it's a beauty of the mind. A construction removed from the wild untamed grit and girth of the natural world. Further, his assertions about the difference between erotic art and pornography read like a sunday sermon. His deepest fear, for all his talk about being moved, or compelled by beauty, is to actually feel beauty in something that would not be readily explainable to his peers or the repressed man-boy lurking just under the covers. Faced with his one dimensional, whitewashed view of beauty I had to really fight through the last 50 pages or so. Given that there must always be extreme poles to all things, he on the one side, Warhol declaring urine dribbles as art on the other, I am, surprisingly more likely to side with Warhol who I'd kill if he was still alive. which should say everything i need to say, I think.

  • Dfordoom
    2019-04-10 07:53

    Roger Scruton’s little 2009 book Beauty makes some interesting if very unfashionable points. Scruton links beauty with equally unfashionable concepts like truth and goodness, suggest that beauty has a moral dimension, and rejects moral and cultural relativism. He also links beauty with the sacred, not perhaps in an explicitly religious way but to do so at all would be unlikely to get you very far in the art world of 2011.He rejects everything postmodernists hold dear, and sees their project as being not merely to ignore or belittle everything of value, including beauty, but to deliberately desecrate it.Also interesting is his chapter on the beauties of everyday life, of the search for harmony and order even in such humble matters as table settings or fashion or the design of a door. He also speaks movingly of the pleasures afforded by a domesticated countryside, of gardens and of harmonious streetscapes.A couple of quotes:“...this change was art of the great shift in educated opinion which we know as the romantic movement, and which placed the feelings of the individual, for whom self is more interesting than other and wandering more noble than belonging, at the centre of our culture. Art became the enterprise through which the individual announces himself to the world and calls on the gods for vindication. Yet it has proved singularly unreliable as the guardian of our higher aspirations. Art picked up the torch of beauty, ran with it for a while, and then dropped it in the pissoirs of Paris.”“It is one mark of rational beings that they do not live only - or even at all - in the present. They have the freedom to despise the world that surrounds them and to live in another way.”

  • Douglas Wilson
    2019-04-07 05:35

    Scruton is fabulously well-read in this subject, and there were many worthwhile insights here. But there is no transcendental traction at all.

  • Anastassiya
    2019-04-14 03:30

    My interest in this book started when I saw Prof. Scruton on BBC discussing the importance of aesthetically pleasing architecture as opposed to it being minimalistic and practical. I was hoping to read some good criticism regarding modern art. And the book exceeded my expectations. He wonderfully compared his thoughts with Plato, spoke of the true masterpieces. His criticism of the modern art is so balanced, soft and highly rational.This book should be given to every Art teacher and student so as to have a certain height towards which to aspire to. He opens eyes as to what real Beauty constitutes, without cliches, but addressing higher senses. "True art is an appeal to our higher nature, an attempt to affirm that other kingdom in which moral and spiritual order prevails. Art matters, because it is the real presence of our spiritual ideals. Without the conscious pursuit of beauty we risk falling into a world in which the worthwhileness of human life is no longer clearly perceivable.We seem to be caught between two forms of sacrilege, the one dealing in sugary dreams, the other in savage fantasies. Both are forms of falsehood, ways of reducing and demeaning our humanity."

  • Jeroen Van Sweeveldt
    2019-04-08 06:50

    So, how to rate this book? Roger Scruton is a very good writer, and he brings up interesting subjects in this book, for instance the attention to everyday beauty, such as gardens, the way people dress, etc., which is often overlooked in aesthetic discussions.However, he never fails to give me the willies with the actual content of his writings; Scruton has an extremely conservative, elitist, and - in my opinion - narrow-minded opinion of art, degrading practically all of contemporary culture, including but not limited to modern painting, architecture, pop music, photography (boy, is he particularly butthurt about photography), etc., and would sooner wish for the world to regurgitate the same classical art until the end of all time rather than granting artists true freedom to express themselves, to experiment and thus explore new opportunities in the artworld. It comes as no surprise that he has given lectures organized by the most hardcore far-right political party in this country.Despite the contents of his writings I believe that anyone interested in art philosophy should make oneself acquainted with his work, even if you utterly disagree with Scruton's ideas. Of course, if you, on the other hand, share his conservative views on art, then you will find a lot to agree about in his work.

  • Eric McLean
    2019-04-15 07:47

    Everyone should read this that is serious about their approach to the question "What is beauty?". I think that the discussion on pornography is especially applicable today and answers a lot of the "why" concerning the ugliness of pornography. It is a short read, although a dense one, and is considered a more conservative philosophy, which I appreciated.

  • Christina
    2019-04-26 05:46

    Refreshingly aspirational: human beings need beauty.

  • Ben Smitthimedhin
    2019-04-01 02:52

    Carrie and I were looking for a burger place to eat last night. I almost suggested Five Guys, the only decent burger place in town (although I've never gone "burger hunting" either), but I quickly decided against it. Five Guys has really good burgers, but it's just so plain ugly inside that I can't stand to be in there for long. But why should pretty architecture really be a determiner in restaurant choice? I wasn't necessarily looking for a place that was Instagram-worthy, so it wasn't for utilitarian purposes. We ended up going to Beer-88 instead. It was a mix between a bar and a Chinese restaurant (seriously, they had Chinese characters on all the tables), but the burgers were pretty good. We sat next to a window, and we saw the owner of the restaurant running outside with her friend to capture a picture of the super moon. The events reminded me of Scruton's preface: "Yet [beauty] is never viewed with indifference: beauty demands to be noticed; it speaks to us directly like the voice of an intimate friend." The burgers and the book were both great, but I guess not in the same way.

  • Corey
    2019-04-11 01:35

    "The judgement of beauty orders the emotions and desires of those who make it. It may express their pleasure and their taste: but it is pleasure in what they value and taste for their true ideals."A tremendous little volume on a tremendously important subject.

  • Daniel E. Ritchie
    2019-04-24 00:43

    Consider the great triad of the true, the good, and the beautiful. If something is true, don’t you assume it is also good – and vice versa? If nutritionists have true knowledge of health, the food they select will be good for you. And if it is good for presidents and judges to follow the law, the rule of law must be a true element of justice.The good and the true never compete. But as Roger Scruton points out in this splendid book, the same cannot be assumed of the beautiful. Why, for instance, doesn't the pursuit of the beautiful make its seekers virtuous – and quite the reverse in many instances? Scruton sets aside the neo-Platonic solution, “that truth, goodness, and beauty are attributes of the deity,” which often begs the question (3). But he also refuses to throw up his hands and say, “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” Beauty must have an intellectual component. Otherwise, why would we spend hours discussing the beauties we perceive with the eye and the ear (visual and musical art), while the pleasures of smell, taste, and touch occupy much less of our intellectual attention?What can we say about beauty?Scruton proposes eight “platitudes” which undergird his discussion. These include:• Beauty pleases us• One thing can be more beautiful than another.• Beauty is the subject-matter of a judgment of taste• The judgment of taste is about the beautiful object, not about the subject’s state of mind.• There are no second-hand judgments of beauty. (You can’t be argued into a judgment of taste.)• Beauty in a person prompts desireTurning to Scruton's analysis, two of his themes seemed particularly noteworthy to me.First, he is at pains to reject Plato’s notion that beauty arises from eros. This notion arises from the last of the platitudes I’ve listed, for Plato believed that this desire was both essential to the origin of beauty and a kind of mistake (33-34). Initially, one wishes to unite with the object of one’s erotic desire and to reproduce copies of it. But the highest form of reproduction would be to ascend to the contemplative sphere and make copies of the beautiful object (or person) in the realm of pure forms. However influential this approach has been, Scruton compares it to maintaining that “the desire for a steak could be satisfied (after a bit of mental exertion) by staring at the picture of a cow” (35).I don’t think Scruton is convinced that this approach to beauty can rescue art from the temptations to use the body in ways that are, frankly, pornographic. True, he says that eros is interested in the response of the person being depicted, while porn is interested in the person only as a means of satisfying desire (Ch. 7). Still, he finishes his chapter on art and eros by affirming that “the standard of taste is fixed by the virtues of the critic, and these virtues are tried and proved in the moral life.” It seems, then, that we’ve circled back to a linkage between the beautiful and the good after all.A second noteworthy theme that Scruton develops is the beauty of nature. The beauty of a garden, he explains, depends upon an appreciation of natural beautyoutside ofany actual garden. But the garden is also “an extension of the human world,” he writes, an “attempt to match our surroundings to ourselves and ourselves to our surroundings” (67, 69). His treatment of natural beauty prompts him to “recognize that the beautiful and the sacred are adjacent in our experience” (66). The proximity and overlap between the beautiful and the sacred becomes a stronger theme in the final chapters of the book, leading Scruton to valuable insights on modern modes of idolizing beautiful things — or of desecrating or transgressing their meaning. Beauty points the way out of this alienated state, he concludes (161). But recall the garden for a moment and you’ll see that beauty has also pointed the way to a place where human beings could experience harmonies that correspond to their nature. It seems now, at the end, that we’ve circled back to a linkage between the beautiful and the true.

  • Alex Stroshine
    2019-04-27 04:31

    A sublime introduction to beauty and aesthetics. Roger Scruton traces trends of conceptualising beauty, shows how we are to properly judge beauty, discusses the difference between human and natural beauty, defends taste and high culture while condemning the cheapness of kitsch, differentiates erotic art from pornography and discusses the "aesthetics of ordinary life" that are often overlooked. Beauty is about contemplation, about moving out of ourselves towards the other. Particularly helpful too are the inclusion of images, allowing Scruton to name a piece and the reader to gaze upon it for themselves in order to appreciate Scruton's remarks on the piece. This warrants a re-read, closer to a 4.5/5.

  • Mohammad Mirzaali
    2019-04-25 06:40

    اسکروتن، کانت‌شناس بزرگ، بی این‌که حتما بخواهد تعریفی از زیبایی ارائه دهد، انواع آن را (زیبایی انسانی، طبیعی، هنری و غیر از آن) و نسبتش را با مفاهیم دیگر به مانند میل، فرد، جامعه یا حتی پورنوگرافی مشخص می‌کند. با وجود این‌که مؤلف از اهالی فلسفه است، اما کتاب به حد اندیشیده‌ای به قرائتِ فلسفی می‌پردازد و کلیت کتاب صورتی انضمامی و در ضمن جذاب دارد

  • Ohood Al Mukhaini
    2019-03-27 00:32

    أتمنى أن لا يخدش تقييمي هذا الجمالَ بأية فرصةٍ ممكنة. فالجمال لا علاقة له بهذا التقييم، إنما أعني الكتاب وحده مجردًا من أي شيءٍ آخر. إن سألتني عن اللغة، يا سائلي عن اللغة، لن أقول بأنها جيدة ولا سيئة، فهي معتلة إن صح القول، لخللٍ لحقها، مرةً في التركيب ومراتٍ في النحو ومراتٍ أخرى في الإملاء. الموضوع فلسفي، عميقٌ وجوهريٌ، تسكنُ الجوارحُ لقراءتهِ ويحبُّ الفؤاد سماعه. تشعرُ وأنتَ تسير جنبًا إلى جنبِ تنظير الكاتب أنه يحادثك، كأنكما في محل قهوةٍ أو جلسةٍ تتحاوران فيه الموضوع نفسه، وستجدُ نفسك تردُّ على أفكاره، حتى إن لم تلفظ ذلك، سيحدث ذلك في عقلكَ. أعودُ مرةً أخرى إلى التقييم، غرضي الأول من قراءة الكتاب لغوي معرفي، أي مقارنة ترجمتين، وكانت هذه الأولى. وما أتوسَّمه أن الثانية ستكون أفضل. في كل الحالات، أوصِي بقراءته، سأشدد على ذلك إن وجدت الترجمة الأخرى أكثر جمالًا من الكتاب نفسه!

  • Ohood Al Mukhaini
    2019-04-13 00:59

    استحسنتُ هذهِ الترجمة استحساني الكتابِ نفسه. من بابِ إنصافٍ أكثر، لا ينأى مستوى هذه الترجمة بعيدًا عن الترجمة العربية الأخرى، إلا أن مستوى لغة التنظير مُسترسلٌ أكثر في ترجمة عهد صبيحة. وما لم أستسغه كثيرًا هنا ترجمة الحوارات. ما فعله بدر الدين مصطفى في نقل المعنى صبَّ لصالح النص وغائيته. أما هنا، فتركيزُ المترجمة على السبك اللغوي واضح. إجمالًا، سكروتون أجاد أيَّما إجادة في التقاط ملامح الجمال في الجمال، ونعم، أوصي به، ليس ثمة من لا يُوصي بالجمال!

  • Bojan Tunguz
    2019-04-14 07:38

    The sense of beauty is one of the most fundamental human universals. No one is immune to aesthetic appeals, and it seems that the appreciation of the beauty is an exclusive human characteristic. This very short introduction aims to introduce the general reader to some of the fundamental intellectual underpinnings of this essential concept. Unfortunately, the book falls short with respect to this objective.I am a huge fan of Roger Scruton's writings, and have read many of his articles and books, and have reviewed several of his books (including his other book in this series [[ASIN:0192801996 Kant: A Very Short Introduction]]). He is extremely erudite and insightful, and he is able to find a new, fresh, perspective on many of the ageless topics. However, I think that with this Very Short Introduction he has widely missed the target. He makes no bones about the fact that this is an exclusively philosophical outlook on beauty, which is extremely disappointing considering all the great insights that the psychology has given us in recent decades on that topic. At the beginning of the second chapter Scruton attempts to give some evolutionary backing for the sense of beauty, but after just a few pages that approach fizzles away and transforms into various philosophical speculations and musings on sexuality.In his philosophical musings Scruton doesn't seem to be grounding much of his ideas within the overarching western philosophical tradition. He mentions Plato and Kant a few times, and maybe on a few occasions some of the other prominent philosophers. For the most part, though, one gets a sense that the material in this book has been wrought whole-cloth out of Scruton's own omphaloskepsis. Scruton is indeed a great thinker, and many of his ideas are extremely interesting, but after a while I got really bored with all the self-indulgent writing.The book is very long for a very short introduction, and at 164 pages it is one of the longest ones that I had read. It could have used a fair amount of editing for content length.If you are interested in some interesting philosophizing on the topic of beauty, then this book may appeal to you. However, this is far from being an authoritative and up-to-date account of our understanding of beauty as a concept.

  • Rich
    2019-04-13 05:50

    It has been some time since I've read a book of pure philosophy and this book did stretch me. It's dense. I got it because I thoroughly enjoyed Roger Scruton's special about Beauty on BBC and thought this would be a great follow up. While I enjoyed the book, I think I enjoyed the special even more. He avoids defining beauty out right but he does go after relativistic ideas of beauty. He claims that beauty is rationally founded and therefore an objective quality but stops short of enumerating the aspects of the quality. The book is filled with great quotes. I found this one particularly profound:"The willful desecration of the human form, either through the pornography of sex or the pornography of death and violence, has become, for many people, a kind of compulsion. And this desecration, which spoils the experience of freedom, is also a denial of love. It is an attempt to remake the world as though love were no longer a part of it. And that, surely, is what is the most important characteristic of the postmodern is a loveless culture, which is afraid of beauty because it is disturbed by love."Somewhat related to this he states, "Beauty is vanishing from our world because we live as though it did not matter; and we live that way because we have lost the habit of sacrifice and are striving always to avoid it. The false art of our time, mired in kitsch and desecration, is one sign of this."Beauty may be difficult to define, and I'll leave this book feeling a bit unsatisfied, but I think he's on to something here. Beauty causes us to wonder and wonder leads to love which leads to sacrifice. If we have become a culture which is radically individualistic, the idea of pouring myself out for another is repugnant and therefore I never truly enter into the depths of love. Thus, I desecrate and pervert beauty as a way of being pulled back out of myself. But how long can a culture deny beauty? It draws us out of ourselves even as we attempt to deny or pervert it. At some point (at least I hope) people will begin to awaken to the problems of post modern culture because they will wake up and find no beauty, yet their hearts will still long for it. I'm convinced once again by the words of Dostoyevsky: "In the end, beauty will save the world"

  • Nick Gibson
    2019-04-08 02:35

    Scruton boxes in a different weight class than the layman reader. I can only give my impressions as that layman - and as an admirer both of Scruton's political philosophies and many of his higher-layer opinions on art and the good life. In this book, he reveals the shaky deeper layers of his philosophy. Speaking in Schaefferian terms... By refusing to acknowledge a personal God, Scruton attempts to prop up beauty itself as an integration point for meaning in the human life. The result just isn't convincing, and Scruton must retreat into ambiguities and highly compressed arguments to maintain plausibility.Still, those passages in this book where he ventilates on the surrounding phenomenon - pornography vs erotica, modernism, post-modernism, form, function, etc - are convincing and useful. The fact that his arguments and theories, built on a humanist integration point, are so compatible with the arguments and theories of a Biblical Christian worldview suggests to me that what he implicitly relies on what he denies - a personal God - more than he'd like to admit.I'll keep reading Scruton, and agreeing with him quite often. But now I know he's building excellent arguments using Biblical Christian fremdtkapital.

  • David Withun
    2019-04-20 02:30

    While all of the members of the traditional Platonic trinity of the Good, the True, and the Beauty have taken some heavy hits in recent decades, beauty has perhaps suffered the hardest blows and, no doubt, the greatest neglect. The concept of "beauty" is hardly discussed in philosophical or artistic education other than as an antiquated notion no longer to be taken seriously.Scruton sets out to correct this great wrong. Drawing heavily on Kant's Critique of Judgment, Scruton pursues a course that he hopes will lead the reader to believe in the existence and importance of the objectively beautiful. Along the way, there are significant and quite interesting looks at the beauty of nature, the beauty of art, the beauty of music, and the beauty of the human body.While my own tendency is to agree with Scruton, there remain, I think, some holes in the case that he makes. Ultimately, I think there are aspects of his argument that would prove unconvincing to those who are not already inclined to believe in the idea of beauty.

  • Jim Belcher
    2019-03-31 01:48

    found this book extremely helpful in understand the importance and role of beauty in our lives and the false paths of kitch, on the one hand, and, on the other, desecration (like pornography). He provides a good summary of the difference between the erotic in art and pornography and why port is killing our culture. He makes a strong case why we need to regain beauty in our lives, culture and education.

  • Patrick
    2019-04-10 04:48

    I have recently finished Roger Scruton's "Beauty," which I had been reading slowly over a period of time and have referenced previously in this blog. This is a generally conservative approach to "beauty," but conservative in that sense of "is change necessary or is this change for the sake of change?" Or as Scruton puts it: "the relentless pursuit of artistic innovation leads to a cult of nihilism."Scruton is clearly on the side of Edward Hopper over Mark Rothko. I very much enjoy both, but an interesting point (and one that I do not think Scruton raises explicitly) arises when comparing the two as representatives of modes of art. Hopper maintained the figurative -- was in essence a traditionalist despite the Cubist and abstraction revolutions that occurred during his lifetime. Rothko never really was at home with figurative painting, abandoned surrealism, and moved wholeheartedly into abstraction. For many years, Hopper was rejected as "important" because his art was, well, traditional. Rothko sought innovation in form. Hopper was not anti-innovation, but his innovations are less obvious. But innovation for innovation's sake propelled only innovation...Cubism, abstraction, abstract-expressionism, etc. (or romantic to modernist to post-modernist to L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E, etc.) It seems that once innovation became important, the "ism" associated with that innovation fell to the past as old faster than in previous centuries of art. A symptom of an incorrect emphasis in artistic endeavors, perhaps? Interestingly, Scruton comments how many of the modernist experiments in literature and music were attempts to reclaim tradition: "And it [the great modernists:] sees the goal of the modern artist not as a break with tradition, but as a recapturing of tradition." Scruton cites T.S. Eliot of "The Four Quartets" or Arnold Schoenberg's "Moses und Aron." But think of Igor Stravinky's neoclassical repertoire: "Pulcinella," amongst others.I am, in the end, very sympathetic to Scruton's book because he finds, as I do, a value in beauty: "For beauty makes a claim on us: it is a call to renounce our narcissism and look with reverence on the world." He acknowledges that decay, horror, and ugliness are not to be excluded from "beauty," but that art can find a path through those to the value of humanity in this world. Beauty is not about avoidance but about embracing. Scruton's view of kitsch is particularly interesting in this regards. Kitsch "is a world of commodities to be consumed, rather than icons to be revered." I think it will be very easy to dismiss Scruton for too easily dismissing popular art or being seen as an elitist listening to opera and not in the real world, but I think that is to miss the point of Scruton's agrument, one in which he never defines what beauty is. It seems to me that Scruton is not out to tell us what is beautiful but, instead, is out to inform us of the value of the beautiful, which is far more important. Many will disagree with me about Rothko's paintings as beautiful (Scruton does), but when we talk about Rothko's work, we should ideally be discussing its value as something beautiful. What we must avoid is the overthrow of beauty in art because we have lost the sense of the beautiful in the world.

  • Justine Olawsky
    2019-04-12 03:42

    Can there be an objective set of standards for Beauty? Is it only taste? Is it only subjective? Can the traditional questions addressed by the humanities still be asked today? Should they be? British philosopher and all around spectacular fellow Roger Scruton opens his extended meditation on Beauty (as abstraction, as ideal, as concrete, as truth) with questions about judging the universal desire of the soul, before he ever delves into its many facets. It is apropos, of course, because the job of the philosopher is to ask the questions that will lead to enlightened discussion. First examined is human beauty -- the Beauty of desire, a very personal response to Beauty. It is interesting that Mr. Scruton emphasizes that the more reverent this response to Beauty is in another, the less sexual is the desire. It becomes more contemplative.Then, Mr. Scruton turns his eye to the love of every true Englishman: Nature. The beauty of Nature is the beauty of awe mixed with a sense of awareness that, "a world that makes room for such things makes room for you." Even so, it is a less personal experience, one rather of "independence and apartness."Mr. Scruton then narrows his scope toward the world of human creation, what he calls "Everyday Beauty." This is the beauty of order, of harmony, of reason. The correctly-placed doorway in a building; the beautifully appointed table, the well-tuned out woman or man; these are expression of beauty in the everyday.At last, Mr. Scruton writes upon that most debated aspect of Beauty, Artistic Beauty, which is the beauty of representation and expression. Can there be a set of universal guidelines to delineate which works of art are Beautiful? Must all Art be Beautiful? Mr. Scruton posits that all memorable works of art fall into two categories: uplifting and demeaning. It is a cultural, and even moral, imperative that the uplifting and the beautiful be acknowledged and taught as the higher human aspiration. In a way, it seems, he is saying that Beauty in art is realized not only in the response of the viewer, but also in what the artist carries inside him when he creates his piece and offers it to the world. The last several chapters of the book constitute and extended plea for re-capturing Beauty as the cultural ideal. I came to this book pre-disposed to agree with the author and read nothing here to cause me to change my mind. One last thought is on the way that Mr. Scruton weaves throughout the pull of the soul toward the Sacred with the pull toward Beauty. It made me wonder if there is no room for experiences of the sacred in a soul, will the profane that rushes in to fill the void crowd out beauty -- or kill it?

  • Mikael Lind
    2019-04-19 06:51

    Roger Scruton is definitely not trying to be fashionable in his aesthetic opinions. Quite the opposite, actually. Fine art darlings such as Adorno get a boot here and there. And yeah, despite being one of those people who actually finds some pleasure in reading Adorno, I also love Scruton's opposing views just as much.Scruton gives the reader some very important food for thought, and challenges us to actually step back and think. Think whether some modern art actually is the work of genius that only a chosen few can understand, or whether it is merely a re-used idea hidden behind a certain discourse, in other words, an empty thing taking cover behind a post-modern veil.Scruton makes so many interesting points in this book that I'm considering marking it with sticky notes to have certain parts ready at hand when I need them. But, unfortunately, Scruton is also very, very conservative. Trying to make a stand against aesthetic nihilism, Scruton contrasts what he considers older, finer works of art with never ones, supposedly bad ones, and asks whether it is not lunacy to judge these on similar grounds. If he would have used the examples Brahms vs. Britney Spears, he would have a point, but he uses Brahms vs. Radiohead, a very bad choice indeed. Radiohead is a great example of modern popular music that is not drenched in conformism or commercialism, and their music can be said to be more interesting than Brahms in a lot of respects. Scruton knows to little of modern popular music to make interesting claims here; he's a fan of the Beatles, but fails to realize that Radiohead is in many ways similar now to what the Beatles were in the 60's.

  • Fernando Pasquini Santos
    2019-04-13 04:57

    Excelente introdução ao estudo da estética - o livro não se aprofunda, mas apresenta quase todos os temas e questões relevantes desta área.De chamar atenção, no entanto, é o tratamento do autor para com a relação da arte e o sagrado, e sua tese de que, embora em dois extremos opostos, tanto a arte moderna como o kitsch têm como objetivo, dessacralizar o mundo. O prazer estético se fundamenta na objetividade e individualidade daquilo a que contempla; é um prazer em algo e não naquilo que isto proporciona e, portanto, tem seu fundamento em algo fora e além deste mundo. Assim, dessacralizar é, na visão de Scruton, a própria definição de idolatria: providenciar um substituto àquilo que é individual e único - na linguagem teológica, santo - de forma a providenciar apenas o prazer imediato, sem a necessidade da imaginação, entrega, sacrifício e disposição a reavaliar nossa própria posição moral no mundo encantado que nos é apresentado pela beleza verdadeira.

  • Philip
    2019-04-22 02:35

    In this penetrating book, Roger Scruton (a favorite conservative philosopher of mine) discusses the importance of aesthetics and beauty to life. Avoiding Plato's pure idealism, Scruton nevertheless maintains connections between beauty and transcendence, as well as between beauty and morality. His distaste for the desecration of beauty by the kitsch and the post-modern art movements is evident, but properly balanced with his defense of the proper view of beauty. Scruton's thoughts on the relation of beauty with addiction, particularly with pornography are notably perceptive. He also discusses beauty in the natural world, artistic beauty, the beauty of the everyday, and taste in beauty, among other topics. If you are interested in aesthetics from a philosophical perspective, Scruton's book is a helpful guide.

  • Richard Pohl
    2019-04-03 00:47

    A very nice attempt to defend the classical art and its points against today's desecration movements... it is not much concerning aesthetics like subject in general, though. And sometimes tends to repeat basic schemes too much. Anyway, stimulating reading (and slim enough even for laymans in the subject). Looking forward to examine more from Scruton now.

  • Alessandra
    2019-03-31 04:45

    the phrase "beauty will save the world" has been tossed around quite a bit, and quite carelessly (sorry Solzhenitsyn). Scruton's argument renews that phrase by supplying it with philosophical substance, in a way that challenges yet uplifts the reader, but best of all, by making the phrase believable.

  • Marlone Manuel
    2019-04-14 05:36

    I had to read this book coz I gotta make a term paper for one Philo subject. But instead of getting some sources here, I found myself hooked up to this book. Yes, my reading it was educational but it also turned out to be recreational!

  • Carissa
    2019-04-05 07:41

    A challenging, thought-provoking read. Scruton discusses whether there are objective standards of beauty, different kinds of beauty (for example, natural beauty and human beauty), beauty and desecration, and the difference between erotic art (such as Titian's nudes) and pornography.

  • Jessica
    2019-03-28 05:36

    The author comes across as a pretentious dick.