Art & Scholasticism
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By Jacques Maritain Introduction by Brian Barbour
Art & Scholasticism is Jacques Maritain’s classic argument for an objective view of both art and the artist. Like T. S. Eliot, Maritain sees the artist as essentially a maker or craftsman and not the vatic orifice of romanticism’s myth. Maritain provides a strong dissenting perspective on the lazy, self-flattering artistic assumptions of the past two centuries. Brian Barbour’s Introduction gives a fascinating summary of Maritain’s philosophical background, his conversion to Catholicism and work in Thomistic thought, and the importance of Art and Scholasticism in understanding aesthetics—be it in poetry, painting, music, or literature. Art and Scholasticism is a must-read for lovers of art and wisdom alike.
“[Jacques Maritain] does have a great understanding of the nature of art, which he gets from St. Thomas.” –Flannery O’Connor
Jacques Maritain (1882–1973) was perhaps the greatest Catholic philosopher of the twentieth century. A convert, along with his wife Raïssa, from agnosticism to Catholicism, Maritain wrote extensively on metaphysics, aesthetics, epistemology, ethics, social and political philosophy, and the philosophy of history—all with the guiding inspiration of the thought of St. Thomas Aquinas.
Brian Barbour is Professor Emeritus of English at Providence College where he was for many years Director of The Development of Western Civilization Program. He has also been a Visiting Fellow of St. Edmund’s College, Cambridge. Barbour has edited four books and written numerous articles on a wide range of authors.