Beyond the Either/Or: The Relation Between the Aesthetic and the Ethical in the Philosophy of Emmanuel Lévinas, Søren Kierkgaard, and Jean-Luc Marion
Danner, Jason Alden, Department of Religious Studies, University of Virginia
Bouchard, Larry, Department of Religious Studies, University of Virginia
Hart, Kevin, Department of Religious Studies, University of Virginia
This dissertation explores how Emmanuel Lévinas, Søren Kierkegaard, and JeanLuc Marion understand the relation between the ethical and the aesthetic. Wary of the excesses that avowedly amoral dogmas like "art for art's sake" can to lead to, the aesthetic is sometimes regarded with deep suspicion, as in the case of Emmanuel Lévinas, who saw in art and beauty temptations to idolatry. Breaking with approaches that sharply oppose the ethical and the aesthetic, I draw on Søren Kierkegaard and JeanLuc Marion to demonstrate that ethical and aesthetic modes of attention are fundamentally harmonious and that their cooperation is critical to the transition from a life of self-centered aestheticism to an ethical life shaped by aesthetic attentiveness.
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PHD (Doctor of Philosophy)
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