The Philistine Controversy

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Verso, 2002 - 314 pages
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Conventionally, the Philistine is assumed to have no value for art and culture, but in this re-evaluation of its excluded identity, the authors address the philistine not as an empirical phenomenon, but as a relational category that operates between art and anti-art, aesthetics and anti-aesthetics, arguing that the Philistine cuts to the core of the predicament of art in a divided culture. The authors develop what they call a counter-intuitive notion of the Philistine, claiming that what the Philistine tells us about cultural division and exclusion is more persuasive than the theories of the popular and the otherly-cultured in cultural studies and postmodernism. They contest that the counter-intuitive Philistine returns the cultural debate to the problems of the persistence of poser, privilege and symbolic violence.

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User Review  - giovannigf - LibraryThing

Seems like an interesting topic, right? Well, your enjoyment of the book depends on your tolerance for sentences like this one: "The dissolution of art, and culture more generally, as a progressive ... Read full review


Spectres of the Aesthetic
The Ecstasy of Philistinism
A Response to the New Philistines
Of Satiation Without Happiness
An Ontology Genealogy and Defence
Another Third Way?
A Critical View
Philistines and Art Vandals Get Upset
When Art Works Crackle
The Philistine and Cultural Studies
The Philistine and the Logic of Negation
Notes on Contributors

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About the author (2002)

John Roberts is Professor of Art and Aesthetics at the University of Wolverhampton. His books include The Art of Interruption: Realism, Photography and the Everyday; The Philistine Controversy (with Dave Beech), Philosophizing the Everyday, and The Necessity of Errors. He is also a contributor to Radical Philosophy, Oxford Art Journal, Historical Materialism, Third Text, and Cabinet magazine. He lives in London.

Malcolm Bull is a theorist and art historian who teaches at Oxford. His books include Seeing Things Hidden, The Mirror of the Gods, and Anti-Nietzsche. He is on the editorial board of New Left Review and writes for the London Review of Books.

Esther Leslie is a lecturer in English and Humanities at Birkbeck College, London. She is the author of Walter Benjamin: Overpowering Conformism and sits on the editorial boards of Historical Materialism, Radical Philosophy and Revolutionary History.

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