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Other titles in the New Directions in Aesthetics series:
Photography and Philosophy: Essays on the Pencil of Nature (New Directions in Aesthetics)by Scott Walden
Synopses & Reviews
This anthology offers a fresh approach to the philosophical aspects of photography. The essays, written by contemporary philosophers in a thorough and engaging manner, explore the far-reaching ethical dimensions of photography as it is used today.
Seeing is believing –or is it? In an era of digital-imaging technology, can photographs still be considered truthful or realistic? Photography and Philosophy takes an up-to-date look at the issues of photographic truth, objectivity, and realism. It tests the limits on what can ethically be done with a camera and examines the fundamental differences between photographic and non-photographic artwork.
Unlike the numerous texts devoted to the subject of Film Theory, this collection contains essays specifically about the art form of Still Photography and the broader theoretical questions it raises. Written by contemporary philosophers in a thorough and engaging manner, it is an excellent resource for students studying aesthetics or fine arts and photography.
About the Author
"As a whole,Walden's collection is a valuable addition to the philosophical literature on photography. It is well organized and contains a sustained discussion of many of the more provocative claims that philosophers have made about photography. It is still an open question whether any of these claims are true, but rather than simply dwelling upon the banal truths that we all already agree upon, it is a lot more interesting." (The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, Summer 2010)"This is a very valuable collection that gathers together a set of articles and issues that should be of general interest to philosophers of art." (Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews, February 2009)
"How does one accept or deny 'reality' in photographic excursions? This is the central issue in this extraordinary compilation of 13 essays by contemporary philosophers who argue back and forth (in editor Walden's clever arrangement) so that readers must engage their own minds within the constantly conflicting (theoretical and personal) propositions/explanations. This is a rich, provocative, intelligent, challenging, and important compilation. Highly recommended." (Choice, November 2008)
"Many of the essays are well written and indeed groundbreaking … .Given its overall depth, the anthology is worth reading by any critic, curator or student of the arts." (Prefix Photo, 2008)
"Will enlighten the student and refresh the informed. Contributes greatly to the literature and will occupy a favorite spot on the book shelves." (Metapsychology)
Table of Contents
Introduction (Scott Walden, New York University).
1. Transparent Pictures: On the Nature of Photographic Realism (Kendall Walton, University of Michigan).
2. Photographs and Icons (Cynthia Freeland, University of Houston).
3. Photographs as Evidence (Aaron Meskin, Texas Tech University and Jonathan Cohen, University of California, San Diego).
4. Truth in Photography (Scott Walden, New York University).
5. Documentary Authority and the Art of Photography (Barbara Savedoff, Baruch College).
6. Photography and Representation (Roger Scruton, Institute for the Psychological Sciences, Princeton University).
7. How Photographs 'Signify': Cartier-Bresson's 'Reply' to Scruton (David Davies, McGill University)
8. Scales of Space and Time in Photography: “Perception Points Two Ways”: (Patrick Maynard, University of Western Ontario).
9. True Appreciation (Dominic Lopes, University of British Columbia).
10. Landscape and Still Life-Static Representations of Static Scenes (Kendall Walton, University of Michigan).
11. The Problem with Movie Stars (Noël Carroll, Temple University).
12. Pictures of King Arthur: Photography and the Power of Narrative (Gregory Currie, University of Nottingham).
13. The Naked Truth (Arthur Danto, Columbia University).
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