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Title: L'art pour l'art or l'art pour la vie? : an analysis of the historical avant-garde manifestos
Author: Judah, Katherine N.
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2008
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This thesis examines the European Avant-Garde manifestos of the early twentieth century. The goal of this work is to determine, from an analysis of this primary material, the intentions of the historical avant-garde with regard to the autonomy of art. In accordance with the European Avant-Garde International Research Project coordinated by the University of Edinburgh, this thesis attempts to review the framework for study of the avant-garde established by Peter Burger in his Theory of the Avant-Garde of 1974. The manifestos selected for examination belong to the movements of German Expressionism, French Cubism, Italian Futurism, the Russian avant-garde, Dadaism and Surrealism. This range covers all those movements that Burger labels the "historical avant-garde". Whilst, in formulating a theory of avant-gardist intention, Burger focuses on Dadaism, early Surrealism and the Russian avant-garde "after the October revolution," this work aims to reformulate Burger's theory so that it may be applied equally to all movements of the historical avant-garde. In addition to establishing the intention of the avant-garde movements towards art's relationship to the social and political world, this thesis attempts to identify the extra-aesthetic implications of such objectives. Whether the movements were heralding a revolutionary doctrine of Tart pour la vie in line with Burger's theory, the traditional doctrine of Tart pour Tart, or were merely an instinctive reaction to advances in technology, their designs arguably impacted upon the direction taken by society and politics. The critical social theories of Walter Benjamin, Theodor Adorno, and Jiirgen Habermas are examined with respect to this extra-aesthetic impact.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available