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Work and ObjectExplorations in the Metaphysics of Art$
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Peter Lamarque

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199577460

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199577460.001.0001

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Art, Ontology, and the End of Nausea

Art, Ontology, and the End of Nausea

(p.208) 10 Art, Ontology, and the End of Nausea
Work and Object

Peter Lamarque (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter identifies a view about the ontology of art in the final sections of Jean-Paul Sartre's novel Nausea and suggests a more positive evaluation of the novel's ending than is commonly proposed. A contrast between the nature of objects, as a source of nausea, and the nature of works of art (with the focus on the jazz song ‘Some of These Days’) is drawn in terms of three features: the viscous, the absurd, and the contingent. Reasons for the absence, in Sartre's view, of these features in works of art are elaborated, partly by reference to Sartre's work The Psychology of Imagination, as is the idea that works are objects of the imagination. Sartre's puzzling claim that works of art do not (strictly) exist is explained in terms of the distinctive ontology of art that emerges in the novel.

Keywords:   Sartre, Nausea, viscous, absurd, contingent, Psychology of Imagination, ontology

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