The history of modern aesthetics has been marked by a tension between a monistic, essentially cognitivist or intellectualist view of the importance of aesthetic experience, and more pluralistic views, which allow room for the free play of emotions and imagination as well as for the possibility of knowledge through art. Architecture would seem to be a poor candidate for a strictly intellectualist approach, but in the nineteenth century some of the best-known aesthetic theories, the German Idealist theories of Hegel and Schopenhauer, took precisely such an approach. I argue that the pluralistic approach of John Ruskin’s Seven Lamps of Architecture, in spite of some antiquarian elements in that work, offer a far better model for contemporary thinking about the pleasures of architecture.
Paul Guyer, Brown University, USA
Harvard Citation Guide: Guyer, P. (2012) Monism and Pluralism in the Philosophy of Architecture, International Society for the Philosophy of Architecture, [blog] 20 Nov 2012, Available at: http://isparchitecture.wordpress.com. [Accessed: 20 Nov 2012].