Friday, July 28, 2006

Platonic question: appreciation (II)

Returning to my recent platonic question, I think I have an idea about what appreciation is. It is (i) being able to explore something to discover the subtleties and ways those details come together combined with (ii) actually using those abilities to explore something. To mangle a phrase from Kant, discernment without intake is empty, intake without discernment is blind. This captures the similarities between viewing art, listening to music, drinking a good cup of coffee, and watching an episode of the Simpsons. It leaves out the appreciation of air conditioning on a hot day, but I think there is a case to be made that that is a different, though related, concept. What is invovled in that is, maybe, more a recognition of the increase in comfort or pleasure. There doesn't seem to be any sort of subtleties or piecing together involved.

No comments: