Democratic values in the aesthetics of classic American pragmatism
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In the present paper an interpretation of the political dimension of pragmatic aesthetic reflection is proposed. The interconnection between politics and aesthetics in three classic American pragmatists: William James (1842–1910), John Dewey (1859–1952), and George Herbert Mead (1863–1931) is evoked. The author claims that by emphasizing the role of democratic values in philosophy and life, the classic American pragmatists encroach upon the field of the arts and aesthetics. Their emphasis put upon individual activity, free expression of thoughts, plurality of the forms of expression, and acceptance of criticism as a tool helping create better solutions in human cooperation can easily be converted into the postulates about the character of the artistic principles and of the nature of the aesthetic norms and values.
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