Aesthetics for Birds

Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art for Everyone

May 29, 2018
by Roy T Cook
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More Than Skin Deep with Jack Woods

Jack Woods interviewed by Roy Cook for AFB Jack Woods is University Academic Fellow in Mathematical Philosophy (боже мой) at the University of Leeds. Prior to this post, he worked at Bilkent University (in Ankara, Turkey). He studied at the University of Minnesota (MA) and took his PhD from Princeton University. He works in philosophy of logic and mathematics, as well as metaethics, the theory of normativity, and philosophy of language. Recent publications include “The Authority of Formality” (Oxford Studies in Metaethics, vol 13), “Logical Partisanhood” (Philosophical Studies), “Intertranslatability, Theoretical Equivalence, and Perversion” (Thought), and “Emptying a Paradox of Ground” (Journal of Philosophical Logic). Prior to studying and working as a philosopher, he played in short-lived punk bands and worked as a bouncer at clubs in Boston, including the Rat, the Middle East, and P.J. Kilroys (Fathers Too), nearly all of which are now closed.

May 1, 2018
by Roy T Cook
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More Than Skin Deep with Eva Dadlez

Eva Dadlez interviewed by Roy Cook M. Dadlez is a professor of Philosophy at the University of Central Oklahoma. She received her Ph.D. from Syracuse University. She writes on issues at the intersection (often at the collision) of aesthetics, ethics, and epistemology. She has written two books on the preceding: What’s Hecuba to Him? Fictional Events and Actual Emotions (Penn State Press 1997) and Mirrors to One Another: Emotion and Value in Jane Austen and David Hume (Wiley-Blackwell 2009), as well as numerous journal articles and book chapters including “Art, Ink, and Expression: Philosophical Questions About Tattoos”, Philosophy Compass 10(11): 739 – 753. Her edited collection for Oxford University Press, Jane Austen’s Emma: Philosophical Perspectives is presently in production. Dadlez is also a feminist ethics dilettante and an occasional novelist. She has indulged in the composition of a mean-spirited academic satire (The Sleep of Reason) that lampoons higher education in … Continue reading

March 27, 2018
by Roy T Cook
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More than Skin Deep with Frank Boardman

Frank Boardman interviewed by Roy Cook for AFB Frank Boardman is is a visiting assistant professor at Worcester State University. Most of his work has been in philosophy, art and rhetoric. He has a completely unwarranted belief that he could also write about parenting, technology or basketball.

May 13, 2017
by Anthony C.
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PEPE IS DEAD! LONG LIVE PEPE?

This is an update to an earlier story that follows new developments in the Pepe meme story: Pepe’s death! Faithful readers of this site will be familiar with the saga of the internet meme Pepe the Frog. (For those of you who missed it, my earlier post on Pepe and the nature and value of internet memes is here.) The latest update: Pepe’s death! But first, a bit of background:

April 6, 2017
by Alex King
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The Metaphysics and Linguistics of Emoji

[Note: An updated, more detailed version of this post was published as “A Plea for Emoji” in the American Society for Aesthetics newsletter.] Some Philosophical Questions about Emoji First, let’s be clear about what we’re talking about. “Emoji(s)” are things like this: [😀🤔], not emoticons like : ) or (T_T) or ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ or ㅇㅅㅇ. (Note: in this post, emoji will be flagged by square brackets so that if you can’t see them, you’ll at least know roughly what you’re missing.)

February 21, 2017
by Aesthetics for Birds
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Can #selfies be art? Saatchi says Yes

I’m going to go ahead and say Saatchi isn’t really that cutting edge on this one. People have been doing self-portraits for a long-ass time. Maybe those don’t count as “selfies” though? In any event, the famous Saatchi Gallery will host a show this spring called “From Selfie to Self-Expression”. This is funded together with the enormous Chinese telecom company Huawei. (Hm, I wonder why they’d be interested in selfies.) Maybe most exciting is for those artistic sorts who read the blog: You can enter your own selfie for a chance to be shown at Saatchi! They’re currently holding a selfie competition (entry rules here), open until March 12, 2017. You have to submit images via their website interface. For whatever reason, you can’t just post an Instagram with the #SaatchiSelfie hashtag and be entered. Although they do want you to use that hashtag on Twitter, Instagram, etc. Or you can just scope out … Continue reading

January 26, 2017
by Anthony C.
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The Curious Case of Pepe the Frog: on the Ontology and Value of Internet Memes

https://www.instagram.com/p/BKMtdN5Bam5/?hl=en Editor’s note: This story has a Part II, with updates on Pepe’s death! In the waning days of last fall’s presidential election a frog took center stage. In early September, Donald Trump Jr. posted an image on Instagram featuring his father leading “The Deplorables.” The image is intended to be a response to Hillary Clinton’s “basket of deplorables” remark. However, what catches one’s eye is a curious depiction of a green frog wearing a Trump wig. The Clinton campaign quickly pointed out that the frog is an instance of an internet meme known as Pepe the Frog and denounced Trump for his campaign’s usage of the meme due to its associations with white supremacy and the alt-right. Not long after, the Anti-Defamation League added Pepe to its online database of hate symbols.

October 22, 2015
by Aesthetics for Birds
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Multi-Origin Art

What follows is a guest post by Joshua Spencer and Chris Tillman . Joshua Spencer is an assistant professor of philosophy at The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. He studies, primarily, metaphysics and philosophy of language. But he likes most philosophical topics. Joshua is also a huge fan of cats.  Chris Tillman is an associate professor of philosophy at the University of Manitoba. His main interest is in metaphysics, but he considers practically everything to be an issue in metaphysics. He is originally from Missouri, where his first major was in painting and he spent his free time in bands, including a country/rap band (hick-hop, if you will). These days his free time is more likely to be consumed by curing meats, genre fiction, and making Korean farmer hooch (makgeolli).  

June 11, 2014
by Aesthetics for Birds
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Difference Between Artworks & Scientific Models

  What follows is a guest post by Eric Winsberg. Eric is Professor of Philosophy at the University of South Florida. His principal interests are in the philosophy of science and the philosophy of physics. He is especially interested  in the role of computer simulations in the physical sciences, in issues in the philosophy of climate science and their application in science policy and ethics, and in the foundations of statistical physics and the direction of time. He is the author of Science in the Age of Computer Simulation, which appeared in the fall of 2010 with the University of Chicago Press. He is also working on co-editing a book with Harvard University Press on the direction of time, and another on the Conceptual Foundations of Climate Models. These days, when he is not teaching or writing philosophy, he is probably lifting weights, stand up paddle-boarding, or working on perfecting his pizza … Continue reading

November 21, 2013
by Aesthetics for Birds
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Punk Music and the Ontology Of Rock Recordings

What follows is a guest post by Christopher Bartel. The standard view of the ontology of musical works in the Western classical tradition holds that musical works are some kind of abstract entity and they are intended to be instantiated in live performances. I take it that this is the typical starting point for the debate. Disagreements arise over the kind of abstract entity that a musical work might be, and over how works are to be individuated. I have some skepticism toward these latter ontological projects (Bartel, 2011). But, I am not thereby opposed to other kinds of ontological projects. Actually, I think some do rather helpfully clarify exactly what is going on in our musical practices.