ONLINE: The sublime and the beautiful were introduced as near opposites, historically, the one fearful and the other charming. Today, however, "sublime" and "beautiful" function mostly as “wow" words. You place your dessert order, and your waiter notes the chocolate’s “sublime” taste. Later, telling how you gave the dessert to a homeless person, your friend replies, “That’s so beautiful!” In this course we will navigate between that history and the present, trying to discover what the sublime and the beautiful really are, how they differ and why they are important. It will be a reasoned investigation into their essential characteristics, illustrated with images from art and nature. Our goal is to gain a deeper understanding of the sublime and the beautiful that will illuminate how they contribute to the meaningfulness of our lives. | Lecture + Q&A.
Max enrollment: 200.
Robert Vance is an emeritus professor who taught philosophy at UNC for 35 years. Along the way, he acquired an MFA in studio art. His sculptures and photographs have been exhibited widely and have received many awards. His writings focus on the intersection of art and philosophy.