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Chapter 14. The Power and Limits of Prof... > The Promise of the Fine Arts and Lit...

The Promise of the Fine Arts and Literature

The ideal of instruction in the fine arts and literature could briefly be put as follows: There are two consequences that follow from the study of the fine arts and literature with regard to appreciation and cultivation: esthetic appreciation and (high) culture. The fine arts and literature introduce the person to the study of what is beautiful in painting, sculpture, architecture, dance, music, drama, and literature. This study elevates the person's taste and provides insight into objects and experiences not available to those who have not come to appreciate fine art. Without this study, few will see beauty in fine painting, sculpture, dance, music, drama, and literature. Without it, many will prefer the superficial, the trivial, the vulgar, and the stereotyped to that which is truly unique and beautiful. Those who fail to achieve an appreciation of fine arts and literature are denied an important dimension of human experience and fulfillment.


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