For a long time, the concept of beauty has been a puzzle for poets and philosophers alike. It is one of the most contested areas of literary criticism. Fortunately, a variety of approaches have been developed and explored. This article will describe some of the most common theories and concepts of beauty.
The definition of beauty can vary in different people’s minds, and is often a matter of individual taste. However, there are certain requirements for a work of art to be considered beautiful. These include the following: consonance, proportion, and integrity.
A more comprehensive approach to the subject of beauty, however, has been to look at the broader concept of aesthetics, as it pertains to the study of human sensibility. By encompassing such aspects as expressions of beauty in artistic creations, beauty treatment, and even the beauty itself, aesthetics is more than just the creation of works of art.
In the ancient world, kalos was the Greek word used to describe something that is beautiful, usually of sensually fine quality. Kalos was also used to refer to something that is morally admirable. Amongst the Greeks, kalos was associated with the highest form of society.
In the early nineteenth century, a new understanding of beauty emerged that was more oriented toward pleasure. This was prompted by the fact that the term was often found in conjunction with the Rococo style of art. According to Immanuel Kant, beauty is a complex discipline that involves both an understanding of what is beautiful and a recognition that it is a good thing.
During the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, many philosophers began to develop a concept of beauty as a separate discipline. This was a very important step in the development of Western philosophy. As a result, modern philosophy shifted its attention from ontology to human faculties. When science and technology sought to dominate nature, the beauty of nature became a problematic proposition. Consequently, many artists turned to more urgent projects.
Various political associations of beauty have also been a source of contention. These associations have been problematic in various ways, but have been especially problematic in the area of race and gender. Many social justice movements have addressed these associations in recent decades. But while these associations have been addressed, traditional approaches to beauty have been thrown into doubt.
One of the more intriguing aspects of the concept of beauty is its ability to stimulate responses in the mind. Some of these reactions involve a reminiscence of past times, or a sense of wonder, while others involve the enlightenment that comes from a deeper understanding of the concept.
For example, an ancient Greek philosopher, Aristippus of Cyrene, took a direct approach to the matter, asserting that the true meaning of beauty is a state of mind that has not yet been achieved. While this may sound too simplistic, it is a true statement.
Of course, it is difficult to claim that a particular piece of art is the best example of a beautiful work of art. Nevertheless, many artists have made use of beauty as a means to express themselves.