"A thoughtful and creative selection of the very best work in aesthetics and philosophy of art brought to life with clear, fresh, and insightful commentaries – there is nothing like it." Dominic McIver Lopes, University of British Columbia <!--end-->
''Through a careful and varied selection of writings, supported by clear and succinct commentary, Janaway's volume succeeds very well in its aim of introducing the philosophy of art and the aesthetic in a way that will allow those new to the subject to grasp its interest and importance.'' Sebastian Gardner, University College London
Designed for readers with no or little prior knowledge of the subject, this concise anthology brings together key texts in aesthetics and the philosophy of art. Two contrasting views are presented on each of six topics, with the texts either reprinted in their entirety or extracted where appropriate. They range from Plato's famous critique of art in the 'Republic', through Nietzsche's 'The Birth of Tragedy', to Barthes' 'The Death of the Author' and pieces in recent philosophical aesthetics from a number of traditions.Each of the texts is accompanied by interactive editorial commentary, helping the reader to engage with the philosophical train of thought. The commentary explains the argumentative and historical context in which the piece was written, and draws out related methodological issues. Where relevant, the editor also highlights concerns about the nature of the subject, suggesting that much of what is discussed under the label 'aesthetics' is in fact better termed 'philosophy of art'. For each topic, questions for debate and a short annotated bibliography are provided.