Practice-Based Accounts of Aesthetic Normativity

Friday 06 December 2019, 16:00-18:00

Senate House, Room 280


Practice-based accounts of aesthetic normativity claim that social practices explain the existence and content of some aesthetic reasons. In this talk, I argue for this claim by showing how a practice-based account can reconcile our interest in aesthetic correctness with our interest in aesthetic value. I discuss three examples—score compliance in musical performance, the look of a mowed lawn, and literary interpretation—that motivate the distinction between the justification of a practice, which appeals to some practice-external value, and the justification of an action or attitude falling under that practice, which appeals to some practice-internal norm. I end by raising objections to existing views about which values ground our reasons to take part in aesthetic practices.