2023-03Discussion Papers, Comments, Book Reviews
Aesthetic Judgment, Embodied Rationality, and the Truth of Appearances: An Introduction to Roger Scruton’s Philosophical Anthropology

Abstract:

This paper offers an interpretation of and introduction to the philosophical anthropology of Roger Scruton through an examination of the aesthetic dimension of human rationality. We argue that attending to our aesthetic experience as individuated subjects capable of intersubjective communion offers a helpful corrective to the deracinated and disembodied view of human rationality prevalent in much of our contemporary ethical and scientific discourse. Through a consideration of how embodied rationality is at work in four different forms of art – painting, music, dance, and architecture – our paper develops the rudiments of a more concrete philosophical anthropology, and on the basis of first principles advances a normative claim about the importance of art and beauty to human life.

Keywords:

aesthetics, art, beauty, rationality, subjectivity, Roger Scruton

How to cite:

Wilford, Paul T., and Eryn Rozonoyer. “Aesthetic Judgment, Embodied Rationality, and the Truth of Appearances: An Introduction to Roger Scruton’s Philosophical Anthropology.” Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture 7, no. 3 (2023):  115-135. https://doi.org/10.14394/eidos.jpc.2023.0026.

Author:

Paul T. Wilford
Boston College
140 Commonwealth Ave, Chestnut Hill, MA 02467, USA
https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8172-1325
wilfordp@bc.edu

Eryn Rozonoyer
Boston College
140 Commonwealth Ave, Chestnut Hill, MA 02467, USA
https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4581-318X
gammonle@bc.edu

References:

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Jacobs, Jane. The Death and Life of Great American Cities. Anniversary Edition. New York, NY: Modern Library, 2011.

Lessing, Gotthold, Ephraim. “Laocoön: An Essay on the Limits of Painting and Poetry.” In Classic and Romantic German Aesthetics, edited by Jay M. Bernstein, 25-130. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002.

Marsalis, Wynton. The Majesty of the Blues. Columbia Records CK 45091, 1989, compact disc.

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Scruton, Roger. The Aesthetic Understanding. South Bend, IN: St. Augustine’s Press, 1998.

Scruton, Roger. The Aesthetics of Architecture. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2013.

Scruton, Roger. Beauty: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011.

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Scruton, Roger. “The Beauty of Belonging.” Plough, October 22, 2018. https://www.plough.com/en/topics/culture/art/the-beauty-of-belonging.

Scruton, Roger. “Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission.” Living with Beauty: Promoting Health, Well-Being, and Sustainable Growth, January 2020. https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/861832/Living_with_beauty_BBBBC_report.pdf.

Scruton, Roger. Confessions of a Heretic. Widworthy, UK: Notting Hill Editions, Ltd., 2016.

Scruton, Roger. How to Think Seriously about the Planet: The Case for an Environmental Conservatism. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012.

Scruton, Roger. On Human Nature. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2017.

Scruton, Roger. An Intelligent Person’s Guide to Modern Culture. South Bend, IN: St. Augustine’s Press, 2000.

Scruton, Roger. Modern Philosophy: An Introduction and Survey. London: Penguin, 1994.

Scruton, Roger. Music as an Art. London: Bloomsbury Continuum, 2018.

Scruton, Roger. “The Philosophical Hedonist: Arthur C. Danto on Art.” The New Criterion (September 1990): 69-72.

Scruton, Roger. Philosophy: Principles and Problems. London: Bloomsbury, 2016.

Scruton, Roger. The Politics of Culture and Other Essays. South Bend, IN: St. Augustine’s Press, 2019.

Scruton, Roger. Sexual Desire: A Philosophical Investigation. London: Continuum, 2006.

Scruton, Roger. The Soul of the World. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2014.

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Scruton, Roger. Untimely Tracts. London: MacMillan, 1987.

Scruton, Roger. Wagner’s Parsifal: The Music of Redemption. London: Allen Lane, 2020.

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