Philosophy of the Arts

PHIL 401: PHILOSOPHY OF THE ARTS Nick Gier, Instructor Spring, 1991

REQUIRED TEXT: Book of Readings, available at Kinko’s

RESERVE MATERIAL: Dickey & Sclafani, Aesthetics: A Critical Anthology; Weitz, Problems in Aesthetcs; Whitehead
reading in reserve file box.

Jan. 16&18: INTRODUCTION. Readings, pp. 1-11.

Jan. 23: REASON AND ART. Discussion of Gier’s article “The Concept of Broad Reason.” First small paper due.

Jan. 25-30: WHAT IS A WORK OF ART? RICHARD WOLLHEIM. Readings, pp. 11-23.


Feb. 8-13: PERCEIVING THE WORK OF ART: WHITEWHEAD. Read file box article.

Feb. 13: FIRST TAKE-HOME EXAM. Due Feb. 20.

Feb. 15-27: PAINTING. Readings, pp. 50-97. Painting group: Saxton, Parsons, McLaughlin.
Presentation: Feb. 25 & 27.

March 1-: MUSIC. Readings, pp. 98-130. Music group: Larsen, Norris,

March 11 Brandon. Presentation: March 8 & 11.

Mar.13-27: POETRY. Readings, 131-146. Poetry group: Lauri G.-W. and Ivan Cannon.
Presentation: March 27.

March 27-: LITERATURE. Dickey & Sclafani, pp. 315-342. Lit. group,

April 8 Blegen and Roark. Presentation: April 8.

April 3: SECOND TAKE-HOME EXAM. Due April 8.

Apr. 10-15: DRAMA. Weitz, pp. 576-94.

Apr. 17-29: FILM. Readings, pp. 147-187. Film group: Hoff, Weber, and Spencer. Presentation:
April 24 & 26.

May 1-10: SCULPTURE. Readings, pp. 220-258. Group: Schmillen and Deibel. Presentation:
May 10.

May 13: THIRD EXAM. We meet in our regular room at 1:00 PM. Study questions will be given out on May 8.

REQUIREMENTS: Two take-home exams (50 pts. each), one in-class exam (50 pts.), 8-10 page paper (50 pts), five small
papers (25 pts.), and 25 pts. for group work and presentation. Students will be asked to choose one art form and join a group
devoted to a study of issues related to it. Your paper topic will be generated out of discussions with your group. Each group
will plan a class presentation on your art form.

OFFICE HOURS: MWF 2:30-3:30; TTh 10:30-11:30. Admin. 305C. 885-6284. Home phone: 883-8438.