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Thomas Reid on Mind, Knowledge, and Value$
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Rebecca Copenhaver and Todd Buras

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198733676

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198733676.001.0001

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Thomas Reid’s Expressivist Aesthetics

Thomas Reid’s Expressivist Aesthetics

Chapter:
(p.139) 7 Thomas Reid’s Expressivist Aesthetics
Source:
Thomas Reid on Mind, Knowledge, and Value
Author(s):

Rachel Zuckert

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198733676.003.0008

This chapter treats Reid’s claim that beauty consists in expression of mental excellence. It reconstructs his two major arguments for this claim: an inductive survey of objects actually found beautiful and an argument that only in this way can one satisfy the demands of aesthetic realism, the grounds for which are also discussed. It argues further that Reid’s expressivism (like his realism itself) also attempts to capture the phenomenology of experiences of beauty: as of a value beyond ourselves, which leads us to investigate the object further or to aspire to attain that value ourselves.

Keywords:   Thomas Reid, aesthetics, expressivism, perception, value

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