Friday, June 4
15:00–16:00 (Helsinki, EEST, UTC +3), Congress Room 1
Chair: Lisa Giombini
Yan Li (Shandong University, China):
The Roles of Imagination in the Aesthetic Appreciation of Nature
It always exists a debate on the model of aesthetic appreciation of nature between ‘scientific cognitivism’ and ‘imagination’, however, both of which have its own shortages. I firstly point out the fact that the role of imagination does not obtain an adequate attention and I argue that the power of imagination has its priority in the aesthetic appreciation of nature, then I fall back to the Kantian theory of imagination and give it an analyze on the hints within to the model of aesthetic appreciation, that is, only the power of imagination is applicable to any type of aesthetic appreciation of nature. Then I argue that the power of imagination owns a contingency and unification in the aesthetic appreciation of nature. In the end I try to put forward a theory of circumstance, which is an attempt to reduce the process of the aesthetic appreciation of nature. The circumstance theory holds that the aesthetic appreciation of nature is a mutual process between subjective circumstance and objective circumstance, in which the power of imagination acts as an intermediary. The subjective circumstance consists of mainly subjective emotions, and the objective circumstance is made up of the representations of the given natural objects and its settings. In short, a certain kind of aesthetic appreciation of nature is dependent on a corresponding subjective circumstance and objective circumstance, and the faculty of imagination of observers is a determinate aspect on the quality of aesthetic appreciation of nature. This circumstance theory is a synthetical aesthetic theory in that it builds a system of triple components and might be helpful to unify the subjective and objective perspective on nature appreciation. And most importantly, it presents the contingency of the production of an aesthetic appreciation of nature.
Antonio Ianniello (Università La Sapienza di Roma, Italy):
Sublime, Enactivism and Hyperobjects
If, according to an enactive approach to perception (Noë), our ability to access the world is linked to our sensorimotor and proprioceptive patterns that we develop during our encounters with the environment, then how can we try to understand an hyperobject that is out of our grasp (Morton)?
How can Homo Sapiens perceive something as elusive, yet viscous, as, for example, all the plastic bags on Earth?
My attempt consists in trying to develop a rethinking of the theme of sublime on the basis of the notion of the hyperobject, thus in the wake of Morton, but with particular emphasis on the enactive approach to perception.
My thesis is that the sublime, understood as “the impediment of vital forces” (Kant) is characterised in the Anthropocene as being connected to the notion of immobility.
The sublime “rescales the human being, ousting him from a privileged position in the scheme of things” (Morton) and repositions him in the midst of the world as a thing among things and yet not just as a mere thing.
The experience of the sublime in the Anthropocene leads man, in a frustrated attempt to touch what is precluded to him, to experience his own total impotence in the presence of what is above him.
Alva Noë, in defining his concept of perception as the ability to access the world, often refers to the possibility of being able to easily get in touch with his mother, who lives thousands of kilometers away, through the mobile phone.
What I am trying to argue is that the sublime in the Anthropocene can be understood on the basis of the experience of holding a mobile phone in one’s hands without a signal. The fact is that, to grasp what I mean, we have to try to imagine that what we have in our hands is not a useless mobile phone without signal but our own body, motionless and purposeless.