November 7 - Three Ways of Life (Kierkegaard) 1. Aesthetic...

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Three Ways of Life (Kierkegaard) 1. Aesthetic The aesthetic life will break down from boredom and despair. Anything in musical form is the closest thing to the aesthetic life. 2. Ethical Judge William will say the essence of the ethical life is choice. He’s going to say to “A” that you, like Don Juan, move from woman to woman, from artistic piece to artistic piece, but you never settle down, you never make a real choice here as you would in marriage. 2. Religious THE MUSICAL EROTIC MOZART'S DON JUAN Abstract Concrete Thought Experience (Reason) (Feeling) ---------------------------------------------------------------- Math Logic Music Math Pose Poetry Drama Painting Music Reason Emotion Feeling Same meaning --------------------------- Various Meaning (Beethoven example from Kane explains that musical notes can mean anything) But I do choose, says A. What do you mean I don’t make choices, we aesthetic persons have to make choices all the time. I have to decide what woman I’m interested in, decide a whole lot of things of how I’m going to seduce somebody, make decisions to see this movie or that movie, decisions to get the most pleasure out of my existence, etc. Judge William has a reply, he says yes “A,” you make a choice, but there’s a heck of a big difference between aesthetical choices and ethical choices. AESTHETICAL CHOICES Vs. ETHICAL CHOICES
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There is a difference, says Judge William If you make a choice in an ethical sense, it’s a very serious choice. The aesthete makes lots of choices, what woman he’s going to take up with, which paintings he’s going to see etc., but he doesn’t really choose because he doesn’t really want to exclude anything. He doesn’t make any commitments. Any kind of ethical choice/meaningful choice involves: --COMMITMENT The choice of marriage for example is a scary choice and dangerous because look how much you have to give up here if you make it. This choice is an ethical one because it involves ways in which the aesthetic choice does not, a commitment that we make that commits us to a long term relationship which we CANNOT forget. Remember “A” says that it is important to practice the art of forgetting. If I have a relationship with one person, and its over with, I’ve got to forget it and move on no real commitment here. If there is no real commitment, there is no real choice according to Judge William or the choice is rather meaningless because you can just move on to the next thing, it’s a choice that I can give up tomorrow as soon as the feeling goes away that’s the end of this relationship. The aesthete is just all about feelings, no real commitments, no danger, no true ethical choice without commitment. --EXCLUSION
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This note was uploaded on 09/27/2009 for the course PHL 301 taught by Professor Bonevac during the Fall '08 term at University of Texas.

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November 7 - Three Ways of Life (Kierkegaard) 1. Aesthetic...

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