By Kang Liu
Even if chinese language Marxism—primarily represented through Maoism—is normally noticeable via Western intellectuals as monolithic, Liu Kang argues that its practices and initiatives are as diversified as these in Western Marxism, rather within the sector of aesthetics. during this comparative examine of ecu and chinese language Marxist traditions, Liu finds the level to which chinese language Marxists contain rules approximately aesthetics and tradition of their theories and practices. In doing so, he constructs a totally new realizing of chinese language Marxism.Far from being secondary concerns in chinese language Marxism, aesthetics and tradition are in reality central matters. during this admire, such Marxists are just like their Western opposite numbers, even supposing Europeans have had little knowing of the chinese language adventure. Liu strains the family tree of aesthetic discourse in either glossy China and the West because the period of classical German idea, displaying the place conceptual transformations and divergences have happened within the traditions. He examines the paintings of Mao Zedong, Lu Xun, Li Zehou, Qu Qiubai, and others in China, and from the West he discusses Kant, Schiller, Schopenhauer, and Marxist theorists together with Horkheimer, Adorno, Benjamin, and Marcuse. whereas stressing the variety of Marxist positions inside of China in addition to within the West, Liu explains how rules of tradition and aesthetics have provided a optimistic imaginative and prescient for a postrevolutionary society and feature affected a large box of matters related to the issues of modernity.Forcefully argued and theoretically subtle, this publication will attract scholars and students of up to date Marxism, cultural reviews, aesthetics, and glossy chinese language tradition, politics, and beliefs.
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Additional info for Aesthetics and Marxism: Chinese Aesthetic Marxists and Their Western Contemporaries (Post-Contemporary Interventions)
The organic, pastoral, and agrar- aesthetics, modernity, and alternative modernity 25 ian ‘‘way of life’’ that Wang’s aesthetics/poetics has intimated invites comparison with the British postromantic poets, critics, and intellectuals that Raymond Williams studied. The mode of life embodied by Wang’s aesthetics of a ‘‘poetic world’’ is double-edged: on one side, it could be deployed, with a certain abstraction, to reinscribe an ideology of bourgeois liberalism into Chinese national culture in an Arnoldian fashion, as is the case with the national learning school’s latest rediscovery of Wang’s significance.
This was posed against Western-inspired reformist or revolutionary ideologies that aesthetics, modernity, and alternative modernity 21 favored scientific reason. In addition, it was opposed to Chinese utilitarian tradition, which privileged politics and morality over ‘‘pure truth,’’ or metaphysics, and aesthetics. Unlike most modern Chinese intellectuals who were preoccupied with China’s compelling social problems, and looked invariably to Western scientific reason and social ideologies as cures, Wang remained inordinately critical of such enthusiasm for Western ideas.
They [the Renaissance thinkers] considered truth the same as beauty, and what was truthful was also beautiful. 31 Although Liang accorded high priority to ‘‘truth,’’ his notion of it was by no means confined to the epistemological and cognitive categories of scientific knowledge and reason. ’’32 Such a definition, when invoked in describing the Renaissance’s pursuit of truth and beauty, betrays not only Liang’s cultural prejudices, but also his deep-seated utopianism, implied by his interpretation of modern Western culture.
Aesthetics and Marxism: Chinese Aesthetic Marxists and Their Western Contemporaries (Post-Contemporary Interventions) by Kang Liu