Re: hobbies

From: John M. (email suppressed)
Date: Sun Mar 12 2006 - 17:13:09 PST

> In my experience it is often people who want to call whatever they do
> "art" -- whether it be fishing, cooking, therapy, (or, for that
> matter, filmmaking) -- who are trying to inflate their egos, because
> they seem to feel that the word "art" validates what they do in some way.
Marilyn Brakhage

Of course at least for the Greeks all of these would be lumped under the
category techne, with what we think of as the arts proper separating out
only fairly recently. My own suggestion has been that because of its
historical origins there is no proper definition of art. "A defective
concept but our concept," as the philosopher Stephen Schiffer has said
about a number problem concepts that are problematic but still useful
(but not, as far as I know, ever about art). One of the functions of the
word simply seems to be as a way of pointing out certain objects with
the implication "Hey, that's worth checking out" with an emphasis on
certain open-ended and continually expanding traditions of checking out.
Not much room for validation on this or ego enhancement seen in this
light. What's valuable isn't that something is art but that some
particular thing really is worth checking out. Some stuff turns out to
be very much worth it; lots of other stuff less so or, alas, not at all.


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