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Aesthetic Creation$
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Nick Zangwill

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199261871

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199261871.001.0001

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Art and Audience

Art and Audience

(p.127) 6 Art and Audience
Aesthetic Creation

Nick Zangwill (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter argues against all theories of art that make essential reference to an audience. It argues that there should be no reference to an audience in a theory of art. The initial problem for audience theories arises from the fact that there seem to be counterexamples. But there are more fundamental objections. It is argued that when we consider the content of the audience's experiences, audience theories are crucially incomplete; and that when they are completed, they are either false or else the reference to the audience drops out. The chapter refines the argument to cope with complex dispositional theories. It argues that we do not always create for the eyes and ears of others, nor do we create so that we can experience our own work. It insists on some measure of artistic autonomy from social pressures, and to give some account of the rational aspect of creative activity. In an appendix, Dickie's institutional approach is discussed.

Keywords:   audience theories, experiences, complex dispositional theories, artistic autonomy, social pressures, rational aspect, Dickie, institutional approach

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