The Discourse of the Sublime: Readings in History, Aesthetics and the Subject
ISBN/ASIN: 0631161732,9780631161738 | 1989 | English | pdf | 324/168 pages | 51.6 Mb
Publisher: Blackwell Pub | Author: Peter De Bolla
When did we arrive at the modern concept of the individual? Many answers to this question focus upon the 18th century in England when capital and property became crucial for the definition of the rights of individuals. This was the period which saw the birth of modern consumerism, with its aesthetics founded upon the uniqueness of the individual and the autonomy of the subject. Peter de Bolla's inter-disciplinary study ranges widely across this territory and examines it in a new light. The central argument concerns the construction of subjectivity in three major works of aesthetics published during 1757-63, the period of the Seven Years War. These texts along with those used for teaching various skills such as elocution, reading and perspective drawing published during the second half of the century all, in various ways, tell the subject how to be, how to present and regard him or herself in society. They are here subjected to theoretical analysis and read, in a strikingly original juxtaposition together with tracts on the National debt written during the war years. "The Discourse of the Sublime" moves from hitherto substantially unexamined eighteenth-century archive material to a discussion of contemporary issues of historiography and theory.