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Chapter 6 is dedicated to examining an article by the Danish thinker, poet, and writer Poul Martin Møller, “Thoughts on the Possibility of Proofs of Human Immortality.” This article represents the most substantial treatment of nihilism in Danish philosophy. Møller reviews some of the then recent works in German literature about the controversial issue of whether Hegel’s philosophy contained a theory of immortality. He claims not only that Hegel’s philosophy does not have a theory of immortality, but also, absent such a theory, that it leads to nihilism. Like Jean Paul, Møller believes that the denial of immortality would render human existence impossible. Møller’s argumentative strategy is to use a reductio ad absurdum to refute the view that denies immortality. To begin, he assumes the correctness of this view, and then tries to explore further what precisely it would mean to hold it. Then from this he deduces negative consequences, which demonstrate that the view must be abandoned as contradictory. He follows this strategy through many different spheres: the life of the individual, social and political relations, art, philosophy, science, religion, and so on. He claims that all these spheres would collapse into nihilism if the belief in immortality is denied.
Victorian sexual norms, though organized around reproductive marriage, were by no means limited to that practice. The Introduction argues that it was common in the period to consider sexual restraint – whether lifelong or temporary – to be productive of health, wellbeing, and energy that could be given to non-sexual endeavours such as religious feeling or art. This idea was found in diverse contexts, underpinned by various models of bodily function, and across the political spectrum. The Introduction outlines the place this productive continence held in an alternative Decadent tradition to that usually explored by Decadent Studies. Far from being incompatible with the embodied pleasure that was so important to Decadent aesthetics, restraint was repeatedly imagined to facilitate such experience, and to answer to the anxieties that many writers associated with the supposed ugliness, degeneration, over-crowding, and haste of the modern world. The Introduction outlines the methodological challenges of its subject and the book’s relationship with other theoretical approaches to sexuality in literature, such as Psychoanalysis, Queer Studies, Gender Studies, and the History of Ideas.
Emotions are some of the most discussed aspects of the experience of art, and it has even been argued that emotions are synonymous with art. This chapter will delve into how art simultaneously conveys and evokes emotions, a feature that helps to distinguish the experience of art from experiences in other areas of life. The chapter will also discuss the developments in research methodologies and trends in the scientific study of art that have brought our understanding of art from being based mainly on anecdotal evidence to being empirically-founded. The longstanding issues associated with emotions and art, as well as present state-of-the-art research on the role of emotions in aesthetic experiences, will also be presented. Finally, the chapter will identify some of the questions and challenges for future research in emotions and art.
The arts have long been tied to various emotional processes, both as a way for artists to express their emotions, and for audiences to understand the emotions of themselves and others. Therefore, engaging in the arts across childhood and adulthood is often hypothesized as a way to foster emotion abilities. While there is burgeoning evidence of various emotional skills such as emotional intelligence, emotional control, and empathy being fostered through artistic engagement, many questions remain. These include questions about the exact skills and behaviors within emotional processing and functioning that are affected; whether each art form (i.e. dance, music, theatre, visual arts, cinema, etc.) differentially affects emotion abilities; whether there are critical periods for engagement throughout the developmental trajectory of childhood and the lifespan; and the possible psychological, neurological, and environmental mechanisms for these changes. This chapter presents recent empirical evidence for what we know about engaging with the arts as a producer and consumer, particularly focused in middle childhood, and the development of various emotion abilities. As a whole, the literature points to inconsistent findings and large gaps in knowledge; future directions are proposed.
Engaging in everyday creative activities improves affect, health, and well-being. In this chapter, we examine the affective benefits of both artistic and non-artistic creative activities and the emotion regulation strategies used to achieve these benefits. Considerably more research has examined the affective benefits of artistic than non-artistic activities. The existing studies reveal several distinct emotion regulation strategies used in creative activities – approach, avoidance, and self-development – with the use of these strategies differing by activity. The studies also reveal a clear difference in the affective goals for artistic versus non-artistic creative activities. Artistic activities are used to reduce negative affect whereas non-artistic activities are used to enhance or maintain positive affect. Further research is needed to determine whether this difference is genuine or an artifact of study design. Additional work is also needed to determine the underlying mechanisms accounting for how these activities improve affect and thereby regulate our emotions. We conclude with recommendations for further research in this area.
Emotions describe a transitory, short-term, and intense state in response to a stimulus. This state will have physiological, cognitive, and behavioral manifestations (Luminet, 2002; Scherer, 2000). It is possible to regulate an emotional state by directly interacting with the stimulus (Gross, 2007). The creative process describes the sequence of thoughts and actions that produces an idea that is both original and contextually appropriate (Lubart et al., 2015). This process is "dynamic by its components itself, their organization, their combination, the successive interactions it maintains with the environment, the unfolding nature of a phenomenon over time and its cyclical nature" (Botella & Lubart, 2019, p. 272). Thus, if we cross the definitions of the emotions and the creative process, two dynamic phenomena, we understand that they will influence each other and vary over time. But how will emotions vary during the creative process? In this chapter, we will lead a literature review to answer this question and we will also discuss these emotional variations according to the creative domain. Indeed, the process is not similar in art, science, design, theater, music, etc. (Glăveanu et al., 2013). We will see how models of the creative process integrate emotions across domains of creativity.
Churchill’s art has remained marginal to the study of his legacy in the twentieth century and yet he was in correspondence with some of the most highly regarded painters of the period, and was successfully presented and reviewed. The chapter explores Churchill’s relationship with art: his encounter with painting, his mentors and influences, painting, politics and the tension between tradition and modernism in the art of his age, the reception of his works, and the question of the amateur versus the professional artist.
This Element asks if the arts can help us imagine a better future society and economy, without deep social gulfs or ecological harm. It argues that at their best, the arts open up new ways of seeing and thinking. They can warn and prompt and connect us to a bigger sense of what we could be. But artists have lost their role as gods and prophets, partly as an effect of digital technologies and the ubiquity of artistic production, and partly as an effect of shifting values. Few recent books, films, artworks or exhibitions have helped us imagine how our world could solve its problems or how it might be better a generation or more from now. This Element argues that artists work best not as prophets of a new society but rather as 'prophets at a tangent'.
This chapter explores literary and cinematic works that capture the emergence of technogenic life-forms in war zones through the artificial vision of the drone: that terror-inducing aerial surveillance apparatus and killing machine that is planetary in its reach and catastrophic in its impact. By technogenic life-forms, I mean machinic abstractions of the organic human form that are available for manipulation, expulsion, and annihilation. These life-forms are the product of a scalar transformation of ordinary human vision through the composite digital infrastructure of the drone. The aesthetic repertoire of the chapter ranges from novels such as Richard Clark’s The Sting of the Drone (2014) and Namwali Serpell’s The Old Drift (2019), films such as Madiha Tahir’s Wounds of Waziristan (2013) and Atef Abu Saif’s war diary The Drone Eats with Me (2016).
This chapter focuses on recent scholarly discussion of how the visual arts may be considered capable of “visual exegesis” (a term first coined by the art historian Paolo Berdini and now widely used). It argues that, when we read the Bible in the company of visual art, we are asked to countenance our implication in each other, in a single world full of many meanings, in the shared conditions that sustain human communication across difference and in the encompassing existential questions that the biblical texts pose.
Cheryl Foster examines Schopenhauer’s theory of genius, which she situates within a politics of knowledge. Many of our dominant social institutions devalue the arts which are overlooked as potential sources of knowledge. Foster argues that Schopenhauer (despite his own strong resources of bigotry) is in a position to address this injustice by making an argument for the distinction between talent and genius, or conceptual and intuitive understanding, and making a strong argument for the significance and distinctiveness of aesthetic, intuitive cognition. Foster looks carefully at Schopenhauer’s description of the experience of artistic inspiration, the receptivity distinctive of genius that enables artists to create aesthetically significant works. She finds that Schopenhauer has unexpected confirmation in the account Edith Wharton gave of her own artistic process. To realize the potential of Schopenhauer’s analysis, we need to free him from some of his reactionary investments, such as his anti-Semitism, misogyny, elitism, and mystifications. Foster carefully reconstructs a theory of genius and intuitive cognition that is both free from these elements and consistent with the phenomenology of artistic experience as reported by practicing artists. The result is a useful and accurate account of a vital source of nonconceptual knowledge.
During his last days at Oxford in 1840, John Ruskin inscribed in a new notebook, ‘I have determined to keep one part of diary for intellect and another for feeling.’ There is no diary for 1845, when Ruskin made his first Italian tour without his parents. Instead, broadly speaking, what Paul Tucker calls Ruskin’s Résumé is for intellect and the letters home to his father for feeling. The emphasis in this chapter is not upon the letters as travel writing or as indices of Ruskin’s intellectual journal, but rather upon their intrinsic qualities as communications between a son and his father that, though written abroad and taking nine or ten days to arrive, sustain the intimacy of a connection between two difficult and complex personalities who have a ‘strong desire to be speaking’ to one another. Whereas Browning and Barrett are embarking upon a new relationship, John Ruskin seeks to maintain an established connection with a beloved father whose demands are testing.
This chapter examines the relationship between Wallace’s writing and works of visual art. Beginning with the many moments of ekphrasis that punctuate the writing, ranging from myths of tapestry-weaving to Leutze’s mural of Manifest Destiny, encompassing Bernini and Escher in Infinite Jest alone, this chapter explores the ways in which Wallace makes use of the language of images in his writing, situating narrative in conversation with visual culture and reaching beyond language to image, color and texture. Reflecting on prior scholarly attention to art positioned in Wallace’s writing, the chapter explores the connections between attention and aesthetic. The chapter also examines the ways in which visual cues appear in other ways in Wallace’s work, from the defecatory art of Brint Moltke in “The Suffering Channel” to the incidence of color as a motif throughout the work, specifically Wallace’s insistent references to clothing. The chapter highlights the materiality of these instances, attending to both the visual and the haptic elements of his narrative deployment of art in fictional worlds. This chapter works in concert with the next, delineating the intermediate nature of Wallace’s writing, poised between language, sense and image, and how his inclusion and occlusion of art recalibrate and reflect the relationships between author and reader.
This introductory chapter explains how, for African Americans the decade’s political disappointments and its social paradoxes also signaled a necessary transformation in culture. It details how the notion of transition, particularly as it informs understandings of poetry, prose, fiction, film, and music that emerge as important indications of the 1960s zeitgeist, and it offers an account of 1960s writers, musicians, and intellectuals who met this political moment in history with a renewed commitment to art. The period represents the moment when “Black” became a political identity, one in which social justice became inseparable from aesthetic practice. In this context, the rise of Black Power nationalism, which is often read as a radicalized version of self-defense in the face of increasing violence, features as a prominent theme to interrogate 1960s declarations of race, personal and collective empowerment, political action, and aesthetics. At the same time, however, experimentation, now a challenge to convention and a call for new ways of being and thinking, became an often overlooked, yet common artistic practice in which avant-gardes in many forms – “free jazz,” poetry, art collectives, and the novel – exposed the potentials and the contradictions that invite new evaluations and investigations.
ART in women over 40 years of age is a fundamentally complex undertaking fraught with many challenges. This chapter carefully reviews the data for effective ovarian reserve assessment and preconception counseling. For women undergoing IVF, we discuss the evidence base for the different stimulation regimens and the multitude of adjunctive treatments proposed for poor responders. Finally, we discuss expected treatment success and when to consider stopping further IVF attempts with autologous oocytes.
The multifactorial etiology of pediatric cancer is poorly understood. Environmental factors occurring during embryogenesis can disrupt epigenetic signaling, resulting in several diseases after birth, including cancer. Associations between assisted reproductive technologies (ART), such as in vitro fertilization (IVF), and birth defects, imprinting disorders and other perinatal adverse events have been reported. IVF can result in methylation changes in the offspring, and a link with pediatric cancer has been suggested. In this study, we investigated the peripheral blood methylomes of 11 patients conceived by IVF who developed cancer in childhood. Methylation data of patients and paired sex/aged controls were obtained using the Infinium MethylationEPIC Kit (Illumina). We identified 25 differentially methylated regions (DMRs), 17 of them hypermethylated, and 8 hypomethylated in patients. The most significant DMR was a hypermethylated genomic segment located in the promoter region of LHX6, a transcription factor involved in the forebrain development and interneuron migration during embryogenesis. An additional control group was included to verify the LHX6 methylation status in children with similar cancers who were not conceived by ART. The higher LHX6 methylation levels in IVF patients compared to both control groups (healthy children and children conceived naturally who developed similar pediatric cancers), suggested that hypermethylation at the LHX6 promoter could be due to the IVF process and not secondary to the cancer itself. Further studies are required to evaluate this association and the potential role of LHX6 promoter hypermethylation for tumorigenesis.
India is a land of enormous diversity. Cross-cultural influences are everywhere in evidence, in the food people eat, the clothes they wear, and in the places they worship. This was ever the case, and at no time more so than in the India that existed from 1200 to 1750, before the European intervention. In this absorbing and richly illustrated second edition, the authors take the reader on a journey across the political, economic, religious, and cultural landscapes of India from the Ghurid conquests and the Delhi Sultanate, through the rise and fall of the southern kingdom of Vijayanagara and their successors, to the peripheries of empire, and finally, to the great court of the Mughals. This was a time of conquest and consolidation, when Muslims and Hindus came together to create a literary, material, and visual culture which was uniquely their own and which still resonates in today’s India.
The Introduction sets out the aims and objectives of the study. The death arts, the Introduction proposes, possess the vigour and energy that built up the early modern world and injected animation into everyday existence. The chosen phrase, the ‘death arts’, while encompassing a plurality and heterogeneity of disciplines, activities, and techniques dedicated to mortality, foregrounds their artifice, thereby permitting us to conceive of the distinctive features and constructedness of Renaissance artifacts, whether textual, cognitive, or visual. Divided into the three subsections, the Introduction first outlines the legacy of the death arts in early modern English culture. Next we describe how the death arts are represented, focusing specifically on issues of gender, sexuality, and race. The introduction closes with a helpful guide for how to use the anthology.
This volume is the first to consider the golden century of Gothic ivory sculpture (1230-1330) in its material, theological, and artistic contexts. Providing a range of new sources and interpretations, Sarah Guérin charts the progressive development and deepening of material resonances expressed in these small-scale carvings. Guérin traces the journey of ivory tusks, from the intercontinental trade routes that delivered ivory tusks to northern Europe, to the workbenches of specialist artisans in medieval Paris, and, ultimately, the altars and private chapels in which these objects were venerated. She also studies the rich social lives and uses of a diverse range of art works fashioned from ivory, including standalone statuettes, diptychs, tabernacles, and altarpieces. Offering new insights into the resonances that ivory sculpture held for their makers and viewers, Guérin's study contributes to our understanding of the history of materials, craft, and later medieval devotional practices.
India is a land of enormous diversity. Cross-cultural influences are everywhere in evidence, in the food people eat, the clothes they wear, and in the places they worship. This was ever the case, and at no time more so than in the India that existed from c. 1200 to 1750, before European intervention. In this thoughtfully revised and updated second edition, readers are taken on a richly illustrated journey across the political, economic, religious, and cultural landscapes of India – from the Ghurid conquest and the Delhi Sultanate, through the rise and fall of the southern kingdom of Vijayanagara and their successors, to the peripheries of empire, to the great court of the Mughals. This was a time of conquest and consolidation, when Muslims and Hindus came together to create a literary, material, and visual culture which was uniquely their own and which still resonates today.