Aesthetics and Marxism: Chinese Aesthetic Marxists and Their by Kang Liu

By Kang Liu

Although chinese language Marxism—primarily represented by means of Maoism—is as a rule visible via Western intellectuals as monolithic, Liu Kang argues that its practices and tasks are as various as these in Western Marxism, relatively within the region of aesthetics. during this comparative examine of eu and chinese language Marxist traditions, Liu finds the level to which chinese language Marxists comprise principles approximately aesthetics and tradition of their theories and practices. In doing so, he constructs a totally new knowing of chinese language Marxism.
Far from being secondary issues in chinese language Marxism, aesthetics and tradition are in reality significant issues. during this appreciate, such Marxists are just like their Western opposite numbers, even if Europeans have had little knowing of the chinese language event. Liu strains the family tree of aesthetic discourse in either sleek China and the West because the period of classical German idea, exhibiting the place conceptual changes and divergences have happened within the traditions. He examines the paintings of Mao Zedong, Lu Xun, Li Zehou, Qu Qiubai, and others in China, and from the West he discusses Kant, Schiller, Schopenhauer, and Marxist theorists together with Horkheimer, Adorno, Benjamin, and Marcuse. whereas stressing the range of Marxist positions inside China in addition to within the West, Liu explains how principles of tradition and aesthetics have provided a confident imaginative and prescient for a postrevolutionary society and feature affected a large box of concerns related to the issues of modernity.
Forcefully argued and theoretically refined, this ebook will attract scholars and students of up to date Marxism, cultural reports, aesthetics, and sleek chinese language tradition, politics, and ideology.

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Extra resources for Aesthetics and Marxism: Chinese Aesthetic Marxists and Their Western Contemporaries (Post-Contemporary Interventions)

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62 The phenomenal world refers in Cai’s vocabulary to the real world, in which injustice, class conflict, and other evils go hand in hand with humankind’s pursuit of happiness. The noumenal world, by contrast, turned out to be an ethical and moral entity, subject to historical mutations. It differs from the metaphysical Kantian ding an sich (here, Cai’s interpretation displays a stronger Confucian leaning). But Cai’s transcendental concepts did not transcend reality. His understanding of the Kantian dichotomy of phenomenal and noumenal worlds had an unequivocal historical referent: conflict-ridden modernity.

As a person, he remains a controversial figure. A scholar of formida18 aesthetics and marxism ble erudition in philosophy, aesthetics, history, and literary criticism, Wang was perhaps the first to incorporate modern Western concepts into studies of Chinese literature in sophisticated ways. Fiercely hostile to social reform and revolution, Wang in his later years occupied himself entirely with Confucian classics. Politically speaking, Wang was a staunch conservative. Many years after the Qing Dynasty was overthrown by the 1911 Republican Revolution, he remained till his death a loyalist to the dethroned emperor.

Wang’s aesthetic ideas can be seen as radically modernist and traditionalist at once. As a person, he remains a controversial figure. A scholar of formida18 aesthetics and marxism ble erudition in philosophy, aesthetics, history, and literary criticism, Wang was perhaps the first to incorporate modern Western concepts into studies of Chinese literature in sophisticated ways. Fiercely hostile to social reform and revolution, Wang in his later years occupied himself entirely with Confucian classics.

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