Dominic McIver LopesDominic McIver Lopes

Distinguished University Scholar and Professor in Philosophy at the University of British Columbia.

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Feckless Reason
Wednesday, 18 May 2011
16:00-18:00 at Senate House, Room G35

Empirical research on aesthetic response poses two challenges to philosophy. The more familiar challenge is that scientific explanations of aesthetic responses debunk what we take to be our reasons for those responses. One reaction to this challenge is an accommodation strategy that seeks to reconcile the scientific findings with an improved understanding of our normative reasons. This paper presents a more fundamental challenge: some empirical research challenges the role of reasoning in aesthetic response. This challenges the accommodation strategy and suggests that philosophy should adopt a more radical naturalism about aesthetic response.