Aestheticism Essay, Research Paper


late 19th-century European arts movement which centred on the

doctrine that art exists for the sake of its beauty alone, and that it

need serve no political, didactic, or other purpose.


from Europe, history of

To those who dedicated their lives to Symbolist literature and

criticism the name of aesthetes is often given, for it was at this

time, from 1870 to the end of the century, that questions of

aesthetics became the intense concern of artists, critics, and a

portion of the public. The phrase “art for art’s sake,” which the…


from art, philosophy of

Diametrically opposed to the moralistic view is aestheticism, the

view that, instead of art (and everything else) being the

handmaiden of morality, morality (and everything else) should be

the handmaiden of art. The proponents of this view hold that the

experience of art is the most intense and pervasive experience

available in human life and…


the belief that a work of art, especially a work of literature, is an

end in itself or provides its own justification and does not exist to

serve a moral or didactic purpose. It was adopted by proponents

of New Criticism in the 1920s and is similar to the “art for art’s

sake” doctrine of the Aestheticism movement of the late 19th…

art for art’s sake

a slogan translated from the French l’art pour l’art, which was

coined in the early 19th century by the French philosopher Victor

Cousin. The phrase expresses the belief held by many writers and

artists, especially those associated with Aestheticism, that art

needs no justification, that it need serve no political, didactic, or…

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