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Title: German aesthetics as a response to Kant's "Third Critique" : the thought of Friedrich Schiller, Friedrich Holderlin and Friedrich Schlegel in the 1790s
Author: Higgins, Edwina
Awarding Body: Cardiff University
Current Institution: Cardiff University
Date of Award: 2008
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This thesis is about the way aesthetic thought changed or developed in Germany in the years immediately after the publication of Immanuel Kant's third critique - A Critique of the Power of Judgement. Besides many comparatively minor developments, it identifies three important changes in aesthetic thinking after Kant. Firstly, there was an increased emphasis on the integrated and interdependent nature of the human thinking that Kant had been more concerned to classify and analyse. Secondly, the change in aesthetics marks the change from Enlightenment classicism to Early German Romanticism. Thirdly, the role of aesthetics itself changed, from attempting to define the concept of beauty and explain how we perceive it, to claiming that aesthetics is concerned with humanity's search for meaning in the work of art. This last development amounts to a suggestion that the hermeneutic strand in philosophy grew out of early post-Kantian aesthetics. Three thinkers have been selected as a means of showing these changes. They are Friedrich Schiller, the poet and dramatist, Friedrich Holderlin, the poet, and Friedrich Schlegel, the literary theorist and essayist. Chronologically, our period begins in 1793 and ends about 1800, just before the death of Kant (1804), the death of Schiller (1805), the mental collapse of Holderlin (1806), and with the final editions of Schlegel's literary journal, Athendum (1800). This timespan allows a fairly close study of Schiller's influential series of essays on philosophical aesthetics, which he wrote in direct response to the Third Critique, re-examining Kant's claim that the judgement of taste is subjective, and expanding Kant's account of how it is possible to create works of art and also of Friedrich Holderlin's and Friedrich Schlegel's most productive years, when both worked out aesthetic theories that moved onwards from Schiller, but nevertheless remained indebted to Kant in several respects.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available