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Word And Image In Ancient Greece$
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N. Keith Rutter and Brian Sparkes

Print publication date: 2000

Print ISBN-13: 9780748614066

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748614066.001.0001

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Social Structure, Cultural Rationalisation and Aesthetic Judgement in Classical Greece

Social Structure, Cultural Rationalisation and Aesthetic Judgement in Classical Greece

Chapter:
(p.183) 10 Social Structure, Cultural Rationalisation and Aesthetic Judgement in Classical Greece
Source:
Word And Image In Ancient Greece
Author(s):

Jeremy Tanner

Publisher:
Edinburgh University Press
DOI:10.3366/edinburgh/9780748614066.003.0011

This chapter explores the role that words played in the construction of aesthetic experience in classical Greece. It argues that the contemporary focus of historians of classical art on parallelisms between word and image should be replaced by a consideration of words as one functionally specific component in material processes of aesthetic expression which have their foundations in the body, embodied social practices and social structure. Artworks are interpreted as statements of aesthetic philosophy, and any art-critical terms that can recover from ancient Greeks' writings are privileged as explaining the ‘intrinsic meaning’ of Greek art. In recent interpretations of Polykleitan sculpture, much is made of homologies between statuary and intellectual discourse. One strand of such arguments develops the traditional view of Polykleitos as aesthetic-philosopher.

Keywords:   words, aesthetic experience, Greece, image, artworks, sculpture, Polykleitos

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