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Beauty and the Contemporary Sublime

This text offers a provocative critique of beauty in interaction with the contemporary notion of the sublime. Refuting established views of beauty, the author considers beauty as glamor, related to a sublime now found in technology and capitalism rather than in nature. The text brings together several questions surrounding ideas of the beautiful, including its place in contemporary art, and proposes a secular theory of beauty, one that poses it as glamorous rather than good, frivolous rather than serious. The text aims to be of use to those interested in philosophy, cultural studies and art history, as well as the relationship between discourse and technology, technology and the body and the aesthetic versus the counter-aesthetic.
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About the Author

Jeremy Gilbert-Rolfe is a critic, painter, and author of several books, including "Beyond Piety: Critical Essays on the Visual Arts 1986-1993" and "Immanence and Contradiction: Recent Essays on the Artistic Device." He has been awarded National Endowment for the Arts fellowships in painting and criticism as well as a Guggenheim fellowship in painting, and was presented the 1998 Frank Jewett Mather Award for Art Criticism by the College Art Association. He teaches in the graduate program at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California.

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