Keyword: Aesthetics Now
  • Curated Group: Aesthetics Now


    What are aesthetics in our contemporary moment?  This is a group of essays that reframe aesthetics in painting, music, poetry,…

  • "Illuminating the Hole": Kinshasa’s Makeovers Between Dream and Reality


    I examine the history of modern urban planning ideas and makeover models in the capital city of Kinshasa, Congo, with specific reference to the career of Pume Bylex. These proposed and attempted makeovers are looked at in the historical, cultural, and social context of Kinshasa itself, specifically regarding its colonial past, its prevailing mysticism, and its residents’ collective yearning for a dream city and a utopia that removes them from the reality of the actual city and nation they inhabit.

  • Persian Literature and Educating the Whole Person


    I suggest that students can learn to use emotional and aesthetic intelligence as a means of living healthier and more balanced lives and that ancient artistic and literary masterpieces are intellectual tools that revive and nourish our ability to pause, look closely, and ponder. I further suggest that, more often than not, seeking questions is more important than finding answers.

  • The Black Outdoors: Humanities Futures After Property and Possession


    Carter and Cervenak recap the multiple meditations (including providing summaries of talks of invited speakers for the series) carried out throughout the year on what "the black outdoors" means for social thought, even as they also theorize and question that very concept.

  • On Biopolitical Aesthetics and the Chinese Body as Surplus


    This essay introduces the idea of biopolitical aesthetics and argues for a more nuanced attention to the figure of the medically commodified body in contemporary Chinese and transnational literature, art, and popular culture.

  • Visions of the Body: Embodied Simulation and Aesthetic Experience


    This essay addresses the questions raised by the distinctly human trait of creating images.

  • Islamicate Cosmopolitan: A Past Without a Future, Or a Future Still Unfolding?


    Islamicate is a term invented by world historian Marshall Hodgson. At once precise and woolly, it invokes Islam—its past, present, and future—yet marks its influence as exceeding any creedal or cultural limits.

  • How Should We Read a Painting Now?


    How does today’s global art world help open up questions about the global reach of art and artists in the past? And, linking past and present, how do we most effectively use language to convey, and interpret, the always elusive affective impact of art?

  • An Alternative Paradigm for Studying and Performing Athenian Drama


    Ancient Athenian drama is most often viewed through the lens of contemporary professional theater in which there is not necessarily any social, structural, or political connection between theater and audience. Closer examination reveals, however, that this drama much more closely resembles modern community theater, which has strong ties to local issues, politics, and audiences.