On The Beautiful, The Sublime, The Pretty, and the Ugly, Part 1 (maybe)

Grotesque head by Leonardo da Vinci

Last semester I used my blog as a platform to think through a project I was working on entitled Five Evangelical Christs. It was a six part series which allowed me to think through ideas that turned into a more developed paper. I really enjoyed the process and got some great feedback, though more of that feedback was written on Facebook than showed up directly on this blog.

I think I will do something this semester in connection with my Philosophical Aesthetics class. I’ve decided that my big paper will be a systematic look at the concepts of the Beautiful and the Sublime. But, as I’ve been thinking this through, I believe I need to include two additional concepts: the Pretty and the Ugly.

The relationship of Beauty, Sublime, Pretty, and Ugly.

Beauty and Sublime both have a long history. Typically, they are set in opposition to each other. I, on the other hand, have a slightly different conception. The basis of my idea isn’t without historical precedent, but that is for another blog post…maybe. My conception has overlapping areas as illustrated with the above Venn diagram. In some ways the diagram is misleading. For example, I don’t believe that the majority of beauty is free of the pretty, sublime, and ugly. But, this is the best way I have, so far, been able to visualize my concept. Please feel free to make suggestions on  this.

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