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The Philosophical Background to Friedrich Schiller's Aesthetics of Living Form


Leonard P. Wessell Jr.

Schiller defined the object of beauty as «living form.» He explicitly related his thesis to a rationalistic aesthetics of form and to an empiricistic aesthetics of life. First the problem of aesthetic theorizing is treated. In the light of this discussion, respectively, the aesthetics of life, form, and living form are analyzed. First the respective ontological universe of each aesthetic theory is developed, then the aesthetic universe in terms of ontological commitments, and finally the specific interpretation of beauty is outlined.
Contents: Philosophy and aesthetics - The structure of theory - The aesthetics of form - The aesthetics of life and the aesthetics of living form - theorists focused upon: Leibniz, Baumgarten, Meier, Locke, Hume, Burke, Kant and Schiller.