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|Title:||Art and the Representation of Mind|
|Abstract:||<p>The dissertation is an attempt to understand the inner structure of aesthetic experience in terms of the theory of mind developed in the psychoanalytic writings of Sigmund Freud and Melanie Klein, and an examination of the way in which the psychoanalytic insights inform the aesthetic constructed in the work of Adrian Stokes.</p> <p>There are three stages in the discussion. In Part One, 'Art and Early Freudian Theory', Freud's theories of neurosis, dream and the joke are considered. It is argued (a) that aesthetic views commonly associated with the theories of neurosis and dream frequently misrepresent Freud and, moreover, are not in themselves of the first importance; (b) that Freud's theory of the joke is the most apt focus for aesthetic discussion; but (c) that the picture of the mind on which the theory of the joke depends stands in need of elaboration and refinement.</p> <p>In Part Two, 'The Picture of the Inner World', Freud's later writings and the Kleinian modifications of Freud's views are considered against the background of discussions in Part One with the purpose of identifying a theory of mind which offers greater resource in the understanding of aesthetic experience. Attention is directed particularly to revised ideas about the unconscious, about the ego and its activities, and about phantasy and phantasy-forming.</p> <p>In Part Three, 'The Aesthetic of Adrian Stokes', the aesthetic which emerges in Stokes's writings is examined with special reference to the psychoanalytic background. It is argued that Stokes's early writings, until 1951, introduce the frame of an aesthetic which is further elaborated and enriched in subsequent writings which make explicit use of Freudian and Kleinian material.</p> <p>The dissertation is introduced with a Prologue which (a) provides a general intellectual mise-en-scene for the enterprise; (b) declares the assumptions and aims which are considered appropriate in the understanding of aesthetic experience; and (c) reviews some of the focal points of the argument.</p>|
|Appears in Collections:||Open Access Dissertations and Theses|
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