I want to make use of this opportunity (Thank you, Christy!) to ask the readers’ help. I’m currently working on a book with the title “Conversations on Art and Aesthetics” set to appear with OUP in 2015. The book is modeled after Alex Voorhoeve’s Conversations on Ethics and will contain interviews with a number of prominent aestheticians. The philosophers I have already interviewed are Noël Carroll, Arthur Danto, Cynthia Freeland, Carolyn Korsmeyer, Jerrold Levinson, Jenefer Robinson, Kendall Walton. But there are more to follow. At the moment I’m preparing a list of questions for Malcolm Budd and Paul Guyer, and it is here that I would welcome your suggestions. If there’s something you’ve always wanted to ask of one of these authors, let me know and I will try to include your question in the interview. You can list your suggestion(s) simply by commenting on this blog post. Before you do so, however, please bear in mind the following:
- The interviews will focus on the authors’ work and research, not on their personal lives.
- The central aim is to gain a better understanding of (i) their philosophical views; (ii) their position within the field of aesthetics; (iii) the discipline of aesthetics itself.
- For a sample interview, please see here. This interview with Noël Carroll was conducted in February 2011 and was published in the online journal Esthetica. (The same journal also has a shortened and translated version of my 2007 interview with Kendall Walton.)
- In today’s research culture where philosophers are prompted to publish separate essays, rather than present grand philosophical systems, it is easy to lose sight of the underlying ideas and overarching themes that hold their work together. That’s why I’d especially welcome questions about the overall coherence of the authors work. (Similarly welcome are questions that explore the philosophical connections, or differences, between two or more of the interviewees.)
- Both philosophers have received and responded to criticism in the past and it’s usually not very fruitful to revisit old debates and worn-out arguments. However, if there are important objections they have yet to address, or if you can think of an objection that has not been raised before, do let me know.
- ‘Tailor made’ questions are preferable. It would be particularly helpful if you could refer to specific claims or arguments put forward by Budd or Guyer, and frame your question by giving a brief statement of the author’s view (ideally with bibliographical reference).