Aesthetics for Birds

Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art for Everyone

AFB’s Top 5 Posts Of 2017


Here were our most-viewed posts this year. Scroll through to make sure you haven’t missed something big!


#5: The Metaphysics and Linguistics of Emoji by Alex King

A brief excursion into questions about the nature of emoji. What are they? What is their linguistic role? And how come philosophers aren’t talking more about them?

#4: The ASA at 75: How Are We Doing with Diversity and Inclusion? by A.W. Eaton

The first entry in our series reflecting on the American Society for Aesthetics on their 75th anniversary. Eaton makes some optimistic remarks about diversity and inclusion efforts, but also points to some problems in serious need of fixing.

#3: The Curious Case of Pepe the Frog by Anthony Cross

Cross discusses what memes are: Should we think of them as types or tokens? How ontologically thick are they? Who counts as the author of a meme, an individual or a collective? He also talks about the ways in which memes are valuable and important for a community, all surrounding issues about Pepe the Frog. It’s also worth checking out Cross’s later follow-up piece on Pepe here.

#2: Punk Rock Philosophy by Roy T. Cook

The inaugural post of Cook’s series on the philosophy of punk rock. This post offers a historical introduction to punk and provides an overview of the topics of the subsequent posts: nihilism, amateurism, social identity formation, and the plasticity of aesthetic norms and taste. And maybe even more! Those interested can see the second post in the ongoing series here, covering punk’s connection (or not!) to nihilism.

#1: The ASA at 75: ‘Splaining and Safaris by Paul C. Taylor

Our most-viewed post this year is the second entry in the ASA at 75 series. In it, Taylor turns a critical eye to the diversity efforts of the ASA. He includes observations from the recent annual ASA meeting and calls out ‘splaining and othering. Diversity is not enough, he argues, and suggests that we need a deeper cultural shift in how we treat one another, both individually and institutionally. That these reflections ultimately go far beyond the ASA and are worth thinking about in the broader context of current diversification efforts explains what makes it our most popular post of 2017.

Thanks to our readers for making 2017 a landmark year for the blog!

Image credit: cuatrok77

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