Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art for Everyone

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ASA 75th Annual Meeting Preliminary Program Now Available

The 75th Annual Meeting of the American Society for Aesthetics will be held in New Orleans November 15-18, 2017.

Check out the preliminary program PDF: ASA Preliminary Meeting Program

George Overbury “Pop” Hart, Springtime, New Orleans, 1925, Lithograph;


  • Early-bird registration is available on-line through October 15.
  • To register on-line (with a credit card), click the red REGISTER button on this page.
  • To receive the discounted ASA member rates, please log into the ASA site FIRST.
  • To mail in registration (with a check), use this form.
  • Early-bird deadline for mail-in registration: postmark by October 10

Everyone on the  program (as a presenter, panelist, commentator, or chair) MUST register for the meeting and MUST be a member of the ASA.

The Wollheim Lecturer at this meeting will be Professor Derek Matravers, Open University, UK.

The ASA will provide:


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ASA Student Travel Grants to Conference on Race, Art and Aesthetics

The Board of Trustees of the American Society for Aesthetics has approved $7,000 in funding to support the conference on “Exploring Beauty and Truth in World of Color: Race, Art and Aesthetics in the 21st Century.” The conference, organized by Professor Charles Peterson, will be held at Oberlin College September 29-30, 2017. The ASA Trustees also approved an additional $1,000 to support travel by ASA student members to attend the conference. The conference will be free and open to the public.

KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Kymberly Pinder (University of New Mexico)


  • Siobhan Carter-David (University of Southern Connecticut)
  • Monica Miller (Barnard College)
  • Christina Moon (New School-Parsons)


  • Sam Liao (University of Puget Sound)
  • Mariana Ortega (John Carroll University)


  • RaShelle Peck (Oberlin College)
  • Meredith Gadsby (Oberlin College)


  • Gillian Johns (Oberlin College)
  • Luvell Anderson (University of Memphis)
  • Lissa Skiltolsky (Susquehanna University)


  • Dan Flory (University of Montana)
  • Matt Strohl (University of Montana)
  • V. Denise James (University of Dayton)

VISUAL ARTS (Material Arts)

  • Nkiru Nzegwu (Binghamton University)
  • Ivan Gaskell (Bard Graduate Center)


  • Fredara Hadley (Oberlin College Conservatory)
  • Chris Jenkins (Oberlin College Conservatory)
  • Aaron Meskin (University of Leeds)


  • Justin Emeka (Oberlin College)
  • Harvey Young (Northwestern University)
  • Caroline Jackson-Smith (Oberlin College)


  • Monique Roelofs (Hampshire College)
  • Mariana Ortega (John Carroll)
  • Meilin Chinn (University of Santa Clara)

The conference aims to take part in the growing movement to examine the role of race and ethnicity in the production of various arts and in aesthetic experience, appreciation, and judgment (where these are construed broadly to include popular culture and many aspects of everyday experience, as well as their appreciation and other aesthetic engagement with them). Race, Art and Aesthetics aims to go beyond the racial binary of Black/White to include the complexity of race and aesthetics in a multi-ethnic, multi-racial society. With this in mind, scholars are included who will discuss Jewish, East-Asian, and Latino/a perspectives, as well as African and African-American expressions.

The general approach for the conference is deeply interdisciplinary. This conference brings together both scholars from a wide range of fields – such as critical race studies, literature, film studies, English, Studio Art, Art History, History, African and African American Studies, Ethno-musicology, Fashion Studies and Comparative Literature and practitioners in these fields – with an eye toward examining the production, consumption, and appreciation of various art forms. Interdisciplinarity is also manifest within the more narrow field of philosophical aesthetics in the sense that Continental and broadly analytic perspectives are brought into conversation with one another. These various perspectives, positions, methodologies and approaches will create a gumbo of thought and discussion.

For a complete list of grants funded by the ASA in recent years:

For newly updated guidelines for ASA Major Project Initiative Grants:

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Aesthetics Normativity Conference

The American Society for Aesthetics has helped fund a conference on Aesthetic Normativity that will take place May 19-20, 2017, in Salt Lake City. The conference is organized by John Dyck (PhD student at CUNY Graduate Center) and C. Thi Nguyen (Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Utah Valley University). Additional funding is being provided by Utah Valley University and the University of Utah.

The conference will be held at the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art in Salt Lake City. Dominic McIver Lopes (Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at the University of British Columbia) will be the keynote speaker. Confirmed speakers also include Nicholas Riggle (University of San Diego), Paul C. Taylor (Penn State University), and Katherine Thomson-Jones (Oberlin College).

Diva, Marthe Keller, 1993, The Met Museum

The conference will be free and open to the public, although pre-registration will be required. Pre-register at the conference website: <>.

Aesthetic and artistic normativity pertain to what’s good or bad in beauty and art. They speak to what makes something—or someone—beautiful or ugly. We are seeing a renewed attention to normative issues in philosophy of art and aesthetics. The goal of this conference is to discuss and assess directions for research.

The conference is free and open to the public; pre-registration is required. Pre-register at the conference website: <>.

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ASA Funds Conference on the Philosophy of Portraits

“Portrait of the Artist” by Gilbert Stuart (American, North Kingston, Rhode Island 1755–1828 Boston, Massachusetts) via The Metropolitan Museum of Art is licensed under CC0 1.0

The American Society for Aesthetics Board of Trustees has approved a grant of $3,990 for a conference on “The Philosophy of Portraits” at the University of Maryland, April 7-8, 2018.

The conference has been organized by Hans Maes, Senior Lecturer in History and Philosophy of Art and Director of the Aesthetics Research Centre at the University of Kent, and Jerrold Levinson, Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at the University of Maryland. Confirmed keynote speakers include A.W. Eaton, Cynthia Freeland, and Jenefer Robinson.

A call for additional papers for the conference will be announced shortly. ASA is funding two travel grants for ASA student members of $500 each for papers selected for the program.

The conference registration fee of $35 will be waived for all ASA members attending the conference.

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Conference on Philosophy and Theater

April 22nd, 2016 at University of Mississippi: Occasioning Philosophy

A celebration of philosophy and theater on the occasion of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death

The American Society for Aesthetics is pleased to award $3000 to support the conference, “Occasioning Philosophy: A Celebration of Philosophy and Theater on the occasion of the 400th Anniversary of Shakespeare’s Death.” The conference will be held on Friday, April 22, 2016.

The conference, hosted by the University of Mississippi, is co-sponsored by Mississippi State University and the University of Mississippi. ASA member Kristin Boyce (Mississippi State University) is the co-organizer of the conference, with Donovan Wishon (Philosophy, University of Mississippi).

The conference will include talks by Noel Carroll (CUNY Graduate Center), John Gibson (University of Louisville), Kristin Gjesdal (Temple University), James Hamilton (Kansas State University), and Paul Woodruff (University of Texas at Austin). Responses will be provided by Kristin Boyce, Eric Vivier (English, Mississippi State) and Karen Raber (English, University of Mississippi).

All events are free and open to the public.

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Conference on Evaluative Perception

Good News: Over the last 10 years or so there has been a noticeable increase in the number of truly outstanding conferences dedicated to issues either within Philosophical Aesthetics or at its various points of intersection with other philosophical subfields. 

Bad News: These conferences are increasingly, if not now almost exclusively, based in the UK or Continental Europe. As a result, US-based Aestheticians, at least those without obscene personal travel allowances, find themselves unable to do more than stare with aching longing at all the shiny conference programs filled with philosophical delights just out of reach.

Case in point: the upcoming three-day conference on Evaluative Perception at University of Glasgow (Sept. 15-18) featuring keynote talks from:

Robert Audi (Notre Dame)
Dominic Lopes (British Colombia)
Jack Lyons (Arkansas)
Sarah McGrath (Princeton)
Paul Noordhof (York)
Susanna Siegel (Harvard)
Kathleen Stock (Sussex)
Dustin Stokes (Utah)
Pekka Väyrynen (Leeds)
Conference details can be found here

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Holy shit! The 2013 Annual ASA Looks Fucking Awesome!

My heartiest congratulations to the programming committee for the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Aesthetics (Oct. 30th-Nov. 2nd, San Diego) as they’ve managed to put together not just a fantastic program (a draft of which can be found here) but quite frankly one of the strongest ASA conference programs I’ve ever seen. The Panel Line-Up alone features a dizzing array of philosophical talent both from within Philosophical Aesthetics and from without. Check out the following examples of Panelized Philosophical Bad-Assery (**starting with the obvious show-stopper**):

Panel: Editor Meet-Critics Session on Christy Mag Uidhir’s Art and Abstract Objects

Gabriel Greenberg (UCLA)
Troy Jollimore (Cal State University, Chico)
Eric Winsberg (University of South Florida)
Christy Mag Uidhir (University of Houston)

Panel: Aesthetics and the Senses

Mohan Matthen (University of Toronto)
Diana Raffman (University of Toronto)
Clare Batty (University of Kentucky)
Jenny McMahon (University of Adelaide)

Panel: Fact, Fiction or Fraud

Stacie Friend (Heythrop College)
Joshua Landy (Stanford University)
Jonathan Weinberg (University of Arizona)

Panel: Location, Location, Location

David Davies (McGill University)
Susan Feagin (Temple University)
Sherri Irvin (University of Oklahoma)
Andrew Kania (Trinity University)

Panel: The Art of Portraiture

Cynthia Freeland (University of Houston)
Jonathan Friday (University of Kent)
Hans Maes (University of Kent)
Steve Pyke (Photographer)
Jenefer Robinson (University of Cincinnati)

Panel: Author-Meets-Critics Session on Stephen Davies’ The Artful Species

John Hyman (University of Oxford)
Stephanie Ross (University of Missouri-St. Louis)
Ajit Varki (UCSD)
Stephen Davies (University of Auckland)

Panel: Law and Aesthetics

Karen Gover (Bennington College)
Aili Bresnahan (University of Dayton)
Darren Hudson Hick (Texas Tech University)
David Osipovich (Independent Scholar)

Panel: The Aesthetics of Wine

Jonathan Cohen (UCSD)
Bence Nanay (University of Antwerp & University of Cambridge)
Barry Smith (Institute of Philosophy)

Throw in a Wollheim Lecture from Gregory Currie and a sunny SoCal host city. Et voila! An ASA Annual Meeting that should not be missed. See you in San Diego!