Philosophy of Culture and Theory of the Baroque
AbstractThis essay takes the challenges posed by a definition of the baroque as model for thinking about the ways in which problems in aesthetic history can shape a philosophy of culture. Attempts to define the baroque as a period within art history have led to an astounding degree of confusion. The search for unifying stylistic markers amidst this confusion has led critics to seek deep structures, while historical analyses of the deep structures fail to sustain their connections to style or form. Using the baroque as a model, this essay looks at examples from the visual arts and architecture in order to demonstrate the ways in which deep-structure theories of culture falter by presupposing a more rigid distinction between surface and depth than may be the case. Drawing in part on Deleuze's notion of the fold, this essay proposes that we look at culture as driven by forces that are both materialized in surfaces that are themselves part of any »deep structure«.
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