Naturalism and metaphors

towards a rortian pragmatist aesthetics

Kalle Puolakka

This paper outlines a pragmatist aesthetic theory on the basis of themes relating to naturalism, metaphor, and solidarity found in Richard Rorty’s neopragmatism. A central part of this attempt is to show that some previous readings of Rorty’s work in aesthetics are misguided. I begin by raising aspects of Rorty’s work that have been previously largely overlooked in aesthetics and philosophy of art, and which I believe undermine particularly Richard Shusterman’s critical reading of Rorty. I shall then move on to discuss the social role Rorty assigns to metaphors in his postmetaphysical liberalist culture and argue that the social and cultural view of art and the aesthetic Rorty’s philosophy of literature contains overlaps in some significant respects with some central points of John Dewey’s pragmatist aesthetics. I close by outlining some new set of issues for pragmatist aesthetics that emerge from the discussion of Rorty’s work presented in the paper.

Publication details

DOI: 10.4000/ejpap.878

Full citation:

Puolakka, K. (2011). Naturalism and metaphors: towards a rortian pragmatist aesthetics. European Journal of Pragmatism and American Philosophy 3 (1), pp. n/a.

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