Essay about The Modernist Painting By Clement Greenberg

1155 Words Oct 29th, 2014 null Page
In his 1960 essay, “Modernist Painting,” Clement Greenberg argues that the essence of Modernism is “the use of characteristic methods of a discipline to criticize the discipline itself, not in order to subvert it but in order to entrench it more firmly in its area of competence.” just give the page number here. Greenberg identifies this self-critical tendency as originating in the work of the philosopher Immanuel Kant and stands on the shoulders of a philosophical giant in presenting the thesis which has come to be known as the Modernist theory of “medium specificity”. It’s more necessary to explain what self-criticism and med specificity mean and to let your reader know how you will address them in this paper than it is to utter abstractions about a philosopher you’re most likely in no position to address.
Greenberg claims that every formal activity requires rational justification, for formal activities unable to withstand the Kantian self-criticism of rational justification are doomed to a fate as mere entertainment or therapy. Such activities are unable to demonstrate that the kind of experience they provide are valuable in their own right and are thus discredited as weak. In order for an activity to achieve autonomy, it must be able to demonstrate its legitimacy in a self-consistent matter. Just as Kant used logic to establish the limits of logic, so must the arts – each art must exhibit “not only that which was unique and irreducible in art in general, but also that…

Related Documents