School of Culture and Communication - Research Publications

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    On depression considered as acephalic melancholia
    CLEMENS, JUSTIN ( 2003)
    “Pain and suffering begin with existence and end when it ends, and this end gives pain and suffering to those who survive.” — Jean-Luc Nancy This statement by Nancy opens a subsection of his book entitled “Pain, suffering, unhappiness,”(1977:143) in which the question of art necessarily arises, and arises necessarily because of modern art’s integral link to aesthetics, the science of feeling. Aesthetics, since at least the latter part of the eighteenth century, functions as a theory of the threshold between sense and sensibilia (to cite J.L. Austin), in which the pleasures and pains of a person’s particular body are bound up with a problem of a universal thought that is neither moral nor cognitive. Both passive and active, aesthetic judgements about art become part of the making of art itself, and these aesthetic judgements are ultimately founded in nothing other than pleasure and pain. Everything else is derivative. Yet it is also true that such derivatives are immensely valuable, the indices of a properly human life.