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Conrad Fiedler And The Aesthetics Of The Kyoto School

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Chapter Summary

The name of Conrad Fiedler, the founder of Kunstwissenschaft, continues to draw attention among Japanese scholars of aesthetics and art history, although Fiedler did not have any special ties with either Japan or the Japanese world of the plastic arts. According to Fiedler there are only two ways to grasp reality-a reality that he described as "a play (Spiel) in constant transformation": 1) by either giving it a name through language, or 2) by entrusting vision with the task of bringing reality into visibility. Nishida Kitarō played a major role in bringing Fiedler's scholarly achievements to the attention of Japanese scholars. "Expression" became a key word in the art theory of Ueda Juzō, a younger colleague of Nishida Kitarō at the University of Kyoto where Ueda was in charge of courses in aesthetics from 1912 until his retirement in 1946.

Keywords: Aesthetics; Conrad Fiedler; Kyoto; Nishida Kitarō; Ueda Juzō



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