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Art, Genre and Value

Harberd, Alice Mary; (2022) Art, Genre and Value. Masters thesis (M.Phil.Stud), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

My thesis is that genre’s influence on our judgements of artistic value is explained primarily by the way the features which are typical of different genres interrelate to realise artistic value. Some features are mutually undermining, and some are mutually reinforcing, as ways of realising artistic values. In the first chapter, I will demonstrate that genre influences our judgements of the artistic value of artworks and their features. In the second chapter, I will present two possible explanations of genre’s influence on artistic value: the Realist Explanation, which appeals to the typical features of genres, and the Nominalist Explanation, which appeals to genre membership as such. I will argue that if the Nominalist Explanation is correct, then we require more contextualist knowledge to correctly evaluate artworks than if the Realist Explanation is correct. I will argue that the Realist Explanation explains the majority of the ways in which genre influences artistic value, except for part of how rebelling against genre norms can contribute to the artistic value of artworks. To explain this, we must appeal to the Nominalist Explanation. I will then argue that the Nominalist Explanation cannot account for the central way in which genre influences artistic value. To explain this phenomenon, the Nominalist Explanation would have to appeal to a premise which I argue is false - that genre norms are relevant to judgements of artistic value. In the third chapter, I will present a second argument against the Nominalist Explanation. I will argue that if it explains the central way in which genre influences artistic value, then our intuitive view about the justification required by judgements of artistic value must be false. Since it is more likely that this view about justification is true than that the Nominalist Explanation is true, we should reject the Nominalist Explanation.

Type: Thesis (Masters)
Qualification: M.Phil.Stud
Title: Art, Genre and Value
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2022. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Dept of Philosophy
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10154984
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