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Bioaesthetics : Making Sense of Life in Science and the Arts - by Carsten Strathausen (Paperback)

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This book originated 10 years before as a project on media history and aesthetics. Strathausen begins each chapter with a particular event and introduces one or more important debates in the history of bioaesthetics, beginning with the eighteenth-century debate about preformationism and epigenesis and progresses to the ongoing controversy about sociobiology and neo-Darwinian theory. The first three chapters focus on three main principles that inform bioaesthetics. He argues that Kant’s transcendentalism, in the context of autopoietic theory, for example, amounts to what biologists call the “structural coupling” of organism and environment--molecular biological as opposed to sociohistorical terms. In the fourth and fifth chapters he aims to clarify the distinction between biologism and bioaesthetics in more detail. He introduces and critiques the numerous academic fields and disciplines that have emerged under the current hegemony of the life sciences, and categorizes them into two major strands--“evolutionary aesthetics” and “neuroaesthetics. Strathausen cites that unlike biologism, bioaesthetics welcomes the methodological and conceptual diversity across the disciplines as well as the productive tension between empirical and speculative theories of culture. He adds that, as a general rule, one can say that the more a particular theory or discipline universalizes its results and disavows the historical constructedness of its object of study, the more predictable and uninspiring its findings will be. He emphasizes that the goal of bioaesthetics is not to police the migration of concepts across disciplinary border, but rather to study the discursive and material effects of these migrations in order to decide whether and how they make sense. Annotation ©2017 Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR (protoview.com)
Number of Pages: 305.0
Genre: Philosophy, Science
Series Title: Posthumanities
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Univ of Minnesota Pr
Author: Carsten Strathausen
Language: English
Street Date: October 15, 2017
TCIN: 53068295
UPC: 9781517900755
Item Number (DPCI): 248-53-4064

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