The Critique of Aesthetic Judgement: Part One of the Critique of Judgement

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Author: Immanuel Kant  | Date: 1790

SS 52. The combination of the fine arts in one and the same product

Rhetoric may in a drama be combined with a pictorial presentation as well of its subjects as of objects; as may poetry with music in a song; and this again with a pictorial (theatrical) presentation in an opera; and so may the play of sensations in a piece of music with the play of figures in a dance, and so on. Even the presentation of the sublime, so far as it belongs to fine art, may be brought into union with beauty in a tragedy in verse, a didactic poem or an oratorio, and in this combination fine art is even more artistic. Whether it is also more beautiful (having regard to the multiplicity of different kinds of delight which cross one another) may in some of these instances be doubted. Still in all fine art the essential element consists in the form which is final for observation and for estimating. Here the pleasure is at the same time culture, and disposes the soul to ideas, making it thus susceptible of such pleasure and entertainment in greater abundance. The matter of sensation (charm or emotion) is not essential. Here the aim is merely enjoyment, which leaves nothing behind it in the idea, and renders the soul dull, the object in the course of time distasteful, and the mind dissatisfied with itself and ill-humoured, owing to a consciousness that in the judgement of reason its disposition is perverse.

Where fine arts are not, either proximately or remotely, brought into combination with moral ideas, which alone are attended with a self-sufficing delight, the above is the fate that ultimately awaits them. They then only serve for a diversion, of which one continually feels an increasing need in proportion as one has availed oneself of it as a means of dispelling the discontent of one’s mind, with the result that one makes oneself ever more and more unprofitable and dissatisfied with oneself. With a view to the purpose first named, the beauties of nature are in general the most beneficial, if one is early habituated to observe, estimate, and admire them.

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Chicago: Immanuel Kant, "Ss 52. The Combination of the Fine Arts in One and the Same Product," The Critique of Aesthetic Judgement: Part One of the Critique of Judgement, trans. James Creed Meredith in Library of the Future ® 4th Edition Ver. 5.0 (Irvine, CA: World Library, Inc., 1996), Original Sources, accessed August 17, 2019, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=Q7PQYFVPY8JGA2L.

MLA: Kant, Immanuel. "Ss 52. The Combination of the Fine Arts in One and the Same Product." The Critique of Aesthetic Judgement: Part One of the Critique of Judgement, translted by James Creed Meredith, in Library of the Future ® 4th Edition Ver. 5.0, Irvine, CA, World Library, Inc., 1996, Original Sources. 17 Aug. 2019. www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=Q7PQYFVPY8JGA2L.

Harvard: Kant, I, 'Ss 52. The Combination of the Fine Arts in One and the Same Product' in The Critique of Aesthetic Judgement: Part One of the Critique of Judgement, trans. . cited in 1996, Library of the Future ® 4th Edition Ver. 5.0, World Library, Inc., Irvine, CA. Original Sources, retrieved 17 August 2019, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=Q7PQYFVPY8JGA2L.