Aesthetics home

what's Aesthetics?

syllabus assignments course guides
topic questions events
philosophers on art critics on art artists on art


Your assignments for the class include:

- Two critical essays about some work of art or art event (art is used here in the generic sense, to include music, dance, theater, film, poetry, and the like). You must submit a rough draft of this essay, on which two of your classmates have commented, before handing in your final draft. It should include description of the work, evaluation of the work, and discussion of aesthetic issues raised by the work. See Writing Criticism for more. Get a copy of the crit sheet for commenting on your class-mates work here: Critical Essay crit sheet.

- Five event reports (a page is sufficient) giving your reactions to some art work or event. These are ungraded assignments.

- A term project, to be the equivalent of a ten page research paper, though it need not take that particular form. The project should be submitted in stages, allowing plenty of time for me to give you feedback and for you to respond. The stages are a proposal, a rough draft and a final draft (with or without accompanying oral presentation).

- Responses to the readings, viewing and listening assignments, and other class experiences, to be submitted each week before the Thursday class session. I encourage you to put parts of these on the discussion board, so that it becomes a real part of the class. Completing these responses makes up 13% of your grade.

Deadlines for Written Assignments:

First critical essay                9/25 (rough draft), 10/2 (final draft)

Project proposal                   10/11

Second critical essay          10/18, 10/25

Project rough draft                11/20

Project presentations           12/13

Project final draft                   12/13

For a session by session list of readings and assignments, consult the syllabus. Here are links to some of the additional readings in pdf format.

Introduction to Shiner's The Invention of Art
Plato, "The Allegory of the Cave", from Book VII of The Republic
Arthur Danto, Introduction to Philosophisizing Art
Suzi Gablik, Chapters 2 & 5 from Has Modernism Failed?
Jenefer Robinson, "The Expression and Arousal of Emotion in Music"
Paul Mattick, "Art and Money"

back to top