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Chapter 1

Introduction

The thesis aims to determine whether Aesthetic Realism is a viable and meaningful
philosophy that could serve as a turning point towards addressing the problem of indifferences
and dualities. It also desires to pick a topic that would be socially significant since what we aim
for is to understand common social problems that we are still currently facing. In connection to
this, the study is able to recognize works of art, music in particular, as a sufficient medium for
the philosophy to expound its values and principles essentially in analyzing selected songs
produced by the Filipino band famously known as Asin.
This chapter explains the purpose and significance of the thesis to society and to
literature, the philosophy that is being used. It is also the part of the thesis that presents
expressions and terms that are commonly used by philosophers of art and aesthetics. For this
portion, I shall explain what makes Aesthetic Realism important to discuss especially when it
concerns the field of art and aesthetics. The core principles of the philosophy will also be
scrutinized and questions as to why the philosophy was chosen amongst several theories and
ideas will be discussed.
We may find various theories and ideas to apply on the issue of dichotomies. However, I
wish to make use of the philosophy of Aesthetic Realism, as it was presumed to be a meaningful
platform for addressing certain social problems. This philosophy aims to prove that indifferences
and oppositions can be laid into one coherent convergence of beliefs and ideas.
Aesthetic Realism advocates that having contempt is the greatest sin a person can have,
so one must liberate himself from being a victim of it. The art of music will be examined because

it will serve as the mode for the philosophy to assert its values and principles. The philosophy
should take a form that is closest to our reality, and I believe that it can be found in art; thus,
generating a thought that any successful work of art can be a source of beauty and fairness which
the philosophy is trying to accomplish.
The thesis would tackle the issue of prejudice and discrimination in view of the fact that
this particular outlook in life causes destructive differences that would eventually results into an
unwanted ideology which is racism. In order for us to grasp its complete notion, it is important to
tackle foremost its cause and effect. We should be able to identify what is the common source of
racism and where does it lead to. Humans are endowed with rationality more than any other
being in this world. They can freely think and believe what they judge as necessary all for them
to survive and adapt. It is the reason why there were several conflicts involving two differing
identities, and a good example for that is Racism. It is a struggle of two groups, wherein one
looks upon the other as inferior. Racism, according to Anup Shah, is the belief that characteristics
and abilities can be credited to people on the simple basis of their race, and that some racial
groups are superior to others (2010). The discussion would also bring us to local problem such as
the struggle of our Muslim brothers on their plight against prejudice and discrimination on the
basis of religion and principles.
In the second chapter, the thesis would cite an example and attempt to observe the
conflict between two factions especially relating to the struggle of Muslims in Mindanao against
the government. The paper would also try to prove that Aesthetic Realism can be a source of
reconciliation between the two identities. It is not to say that the philosophy is the ultimate
answer to end the struggle, instead, it seeks to enlighten its subjects to refrain from nonsense
oppositions and come up with compromise or settlement for the betterment of the country.

At this point, the people involved in conflicts can look at the possibility that Aesthetic
Realism might be a meaningful instrument for them to use on their constituents and lead to
gradual decrease of the number of hostilities especially pertains to the struggle that involves
warfare.
The third chapter will be the methodology used in the analysis. It will bring us to the
discussion on the use of music mainly in the form of a song to expound the principles of
Aesthetic Realism. The fourth chapter is the application or analysis of songs which is taken from
the works of Asin, which are presented as ideal examples. In order to do that, we shall first
discuss the four common classical theories of art such as: taste, beauty, emotion, and cognition.
By this, the thesis wishes to lessen the ambiguity why the art was chosen to be the representative
of Aesthetic Realism to manifest. The chapters will also include interpretations of songs created
and performed by the artists. With the presentation of these examples of songs, it will aid our
understanding why the aforementioned philosophy is attainable and achievable.
A work of art can be of any various forms. It can be heard as a song, seen as a statue or
painting, or viewed as a film. The impact of an art can be derived depending upon the reactions
of its audiences. A good art has to send a message. It seeks to reconcile destructive differences.
Therefore, we seek a great work of art that has a remarkable impact on the society especially
against prejudice and discrimination.
The fifth chapter is an essential part of the thesis for it discusses criticisms and possible
objections to Aesthetic realism as deemed by the thesis. It tackles the complications of aesthetic
experiences as presumed to vary from person to person which would eventually lead to the idea
that the said philosophy is only a matter of subjectivism. Moreover, this chapter also clarifies that

it just presents an alternative choice in addressing binary opposites particularly societal troubles just like racism. The last chapter will be the generalization or conclusion of the thesis. rather. The philosophy of Aesthetic Realism does not claim that this kind of hopeful view towards the world is the ultimate answer to problems. For this part. For it appears that the thesis opt not to separate both concepts. the thesis recommends that attaining an optimistic view of the world is what we should aim for. .aesthetic judgment should not be mistaken for moral judgment.

and undertakes to address societal issues that made us opposites of what we should not have become. emotion. Aesthetic Realism ought to provide us with an outlook towards life. a certain philosophy that deals with Aesthetics and the Art.Aesthetic Realism in the Context of Asin’s Music by: Jan Erwin F. this thesis aims to tackle the cultural identity of aesthetics as well as classic theories of art such as: taste. should enrich its literature In conclusion. Bibliography: . or a viewpoint towards resolving issues like racism that is basically a pressing problem all throughout the world. an attitude. It serves to prove that music as an art could be a significant vessel for the Aesthetic Realism to elucidate its philosophy. It also seeks to provide an alternative approach. The form of art that will be examined will be coming from successful and meaningful songs taken from the hits of a Filipino folk rock band Asin. and cognition – in order to appreciate the essence of an artwork. beauty. Moreover. a fresh interpretation Aesthetics and the Art. Bulang Abstract: The purpose of this thesis is to examine the philosophy of Aesthetic Realism as a meaningful vessel for addressing dichotomous communal problem like prejudice and discrimination. As for the method of scrutinizing.

the Philosophy of Art. Culture. No. Published by: New York: Definition Press. 1704). Caroll. and U.Vol. . The Philosophical Review. Eli (1968) James and the Children: A consideration of Henry James Turn of the Screw. Routledge. Published by: Journal of Hindu-Christian Studies D. 14. published by: mayflybooks Vials. The Sewanee Review. pp. 1. 99. d. Popular Front Pluralism. http://plato. Henry Rutgers (1905) The Relation of Aesthetics to Psychology and Philosophy. 438-459 published by: The Johns Hopkins University Press Marshall. 1632. Guttorm (2007) Volume 9: Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art. Anand (1996). Siegel. Chris (2009) Realism for the Masses: Aesthetics. Essay: Book II. 4 (Jan. 1-20 published by: Duke University Press Official Gazette of the Philippines: http://www. 2015) Floistad. (1919) Realism Pure and Applied. Robert (2010) 2nd edition Aesthetics and The Philosophy of Art: an introduction. Last updated Sunday. “Practice and Theology of Interreligious Dialogue. 2015) Amaladass. pp.. Vol. Published by: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.globalissues. Noel. No. A Critical Study of the Indian Christian Attempts since Vatican II”. Jean Lau (2004) Volume 1: The Psychology of Prejudice and Discrimination: Racism in America. Shah. Published by: Praeger Publishers Locke. History and Politics. Wellington (1917) Idealism and Realism in Art.S. (1964) The Primacy of Perception: And other Essays on Phenomenological Psychology.stanford. pp. 27. (accessed on March 1. University Press of Mississsippi/ Jackson Edie. Gotshalk.org/article/165/racism Ruckstuhl.ph/2014/09/10/document-thedraft-bangsamoro-basic-law/ accessed on ( March 28. 1905).W..Siegel.gov. 1935-1947.edu/entries/locke/ accessed on (March 29. The Art World. Edward G. John (b. 252-256. Chin. 1919). James M. Published by: Springer Raunig. F. Cox. Anup (2010) Racism. Inc. Published by: Northwestern University Press Stecker. Art and the Social Order (NY: Dover Publications. 2015) http://www. 4 (Oct. 1 (Jan.. 1962) p. Vol. No. Gene. 1917). Art and Contemporary Critical Practice: Reinventing Insitutional Critique. Gerald & Ray. Eli (1981). “Philosophy of Art: a contemporary introduction”. Self and World: An Explanation of Aesthetic Realism.

Graham. We often encounter these terms in all levels of society. in which. pp.. in general. Prejudice and Discrimination Prejudice and discrimination are not new. in government. However. Routledge. and even in our neighborhoods.d. binary opposition is a key concept that asserts human state of affairs can only be understood in relation to one another and how they mean within a larger existing system or the totality of environment. In Sociology. is an inclusive point of view that does not only involve the discussion about Aesthetics and Art but also the concept of binary oppositions. we often encounter these oppositions when exploring the relationship between groups of people. let us first examine the notion of racial prejudice as it best holds the idea of being binary opposites. 2007). G. what we are after is to reconcile these differences using the philosophy of Aesthetic realism. 1-52).). (n. In cultural studies. linguistics. but what makes them binary opposites is the idea that they cannot co-exist. If we try to look back on our past endeavors. Chapter 2 Aesthetic Realism and Racism Aesthetic realism. legislation. these oppositions seem to be just labels. a nation’s over emphasis on patriotism oftentimes . or disabled and non-disabled. white and colored. for example: bourgeoisie and proletariats. On the surface. and its attempt to use art as a major force in addressing binary oppositions. and anthropology. one term seems to be “privileged” or more highly valued than the other (Marinaro. education. Philosophy of the Arts (3rd ed. in its strict sense. such as. From here.

upon which our experiences will mark as our knowledge. including. he argued that all persons are born innately good. assuming that this theory holds to be true. and it continues most of the time in unnoticed situations. the idea is that all persons are born with a mind that is seem to be empty or as a blank slate. . 1975). stems as a form of human behavior (Barker. Disparities and biases are still prevalent in most societies and this results in the inequity of resources. Racial prejudice. and religion. and social media from all parts of the world can be directly brought to us. 2003). are only distributed to favored regions or districts. Prejudice and discrimination concerning race and ethnicities have always had psychological effects. The advent of technological advances in travel. gender. or expressed as overtly publicly observable action. it is very disturbing to find that racial prejudice is very common even in children who seem to have the slightest understanding of sensitivity and fairness. the assertion of derogatory verbal statements. But what we need to understand is to first identify the grassroots of racial prejudice. There have been so many ways to combat these injustices and biases. Moreover. and these warrant some different approaches. When we go back to the theory of Locke’s tabula rasa. communication.resulted into a false idealization that creates biases and discriminations especially to those who are in minority in terms of racial and ethnic groups. the internet. This soon broadens to other dimensions of differences. and equal (Locke. Ironically. opportunities. news and information. most of the time. disability. and injustices. this is common in developing countries just like in the Philippines where the bulk of resources. independent. defined as a privately held position.

and ethnicity. Prejudice and discrimination as discussed previously. stereotyping.372). Aesthetics is the philosophical study of our aesthetic experiences. in which we sought answers in addressing racial prejudices and discriminations in the light of Aesthetic Realism. “stereotyping and generalizing about people or ethnic minority group. spirituality.Prejudice is defined as “an opinion about an individual. Likewise. However. Cultural Identity and Aesthetics By definition. Hence. is a form of discrimination. particularly the empirical approach. p. Skinner as everything that human does. group or phenomenon that is developed without proof or systematic evidence. p. stems out from our behavior and understanding of our environment. 2003. laws. and also to study a language that used to express and convey these . to the understanding and control of our socially important behavior. involving studies of aesthetic objects. Racism.397). usually negative. It can become more unfavorable if the prejudgment may become more institutionalized in the appearance of country’s laws or customs” (Barker.F. the form of discrimination can also be extended towards class struggles. what are we actually after is to look for a meaningful approach. commonly a fundamental source of discrimination against member of racial groups” (Barker. Behavior analysis is solely based upon the applicability of principles. of the bodily disposition and mental faculties that allows us to have such experiences. whatever the public observations potentiality (1974). because of their race. it is apt to first lay the grounds of our understanding about cultures and aesthetics which goes hand in hand. The actions that were mentioned above – opinions. 2003. customs. and generalizing – are all examples of behaviors which were defined by psychologist B.

However.experiences (Floistad. For instance. Whether we viewed culture as absolutely original or not. and consumption that eventually lead to moral justification and enlightenment. they are communal values. For example. caring for and paying respect to/with (Tice. the Filipino language adopted words from Spanish. art is demonstrated as tribal and an essential requisite for strengthening social ties. African and Asian aesthetics and moreover Latin-American philosophy. no culture is culturally pure. Mexican. is rather different: they suppose that the most significant function of aesthetic experiences lies in its outcome on the recipient and especially their contribution to communal values. Cultural identity. the artistic writings of the Arab languages serve to be an image of Allah: which according to their Holy book Qur’an is a reminder of the revelations. In simple words. we would still fall on the underlying notion that cultures . in Africa. money. The art therefore particularly chants and hymns have a variety of forms. by definition. also their history and geographical location. the primary focus in Arab. on the other hand. this western definition of aesthetics is not the focus of this examination. The liberation of the individual from his contempt and selfishness stems from the growing culture of media. 2005). certain aesthetic experiences found in India are introduced as religious experience. and American languages. their beliefs. Lastly. 1999). According to Guttorm Floistad. 2005). technology. Belonging. functions as a major contribution to the society’s cultural identity (Floistad. is a system of belongingness to a group of people. and manners. Aesthetic objects are historically and culturally identified. In a sense. In Arab countries. customs. means being part of. Even nature and natural objects may vary – although the forms or the beauty of the various objects may be arranged trans-culturally. Both concepts are part of core values especially in ethical considerations.

2001). Art and religion are crucial elements especially in the shaping of people’s cultural identity: ”Religion and art go together almost in all cultures. And fourth. including religious values. Religion without art could become some ethereal spiritualism. Second.” We can arrive at an understanding that art. sends a strong sense of aesthetic experiences. For it can be used as a critic for other cultures as opposed to what is the practice and custom of the other. in its variety of forms. affection. The main focus of this study is to understand social realities that can be examined and that it merits a particular kind of approach. Third. Religion uses music in rituals and liturgies and develops architecture to suit their liturgical needs. I have mentioned that what we sought is to develop a mindset. Coupled with religious doctrines. memories. As mentioned above. and art without religion would turn into directionless subjectivism. it is also apparent that aesthetics serves as a basis for social criticism. devoid of proper orientation (Amaladass. As a result. it can become a meaningful turning point for someone who endured religious conflict. what we are trying to achieve is to reconcile these aesthetic experiences in the conditions of equality. the trans-cultural characteristics of culture greatly affect the local and national cultural identity based upon the shared communal values. mutual respect and justice. Visual art depicts their religious history. Art shapes religion. is deemed to be a major contributor especially to communal values. aesthetics.embraces other culture’s practices. and provides symbols. which is inclined towards addressing oppositions through the . for the latter follows an inner-directed moral and religious discipline. it strengthens the ties to religious community. a personal character. aesthetic experiences in the Western tradition differs from Non-western. First. in any forms. beliefs.

At the same time. it is by either representation or copying of form and in the composition of lines. or. This is the tendency to analyze things in view of the fact that they represent as they are. especially in arts. realism has often been confounded with the latter while idealism is the former. 1917). as distinguish from the ideal. a support from a certain philosophical view is important. Accordingly. is a departure from the common place of nature in idea and subject – it is the poetization.promotion of our communal values. All art can be categorized into realistic. Hence. what we are after is the realistic aspect of the art and what does realism implies as to what the function . and spirit. by altering the direction or the proportion of the lines. It is therefore the poetization of form and line. as both the notion of beauty and style are produced by the departure from the common place – by means of poetization – they are most of the time confused. This is where I would like to make use of the scheme that was presented by some thinkers who believed that our highest concern should focus or must have an interest for the actual or real. speculative or abstract. However. We refer to style as a departure from the common place of truth of nature. on the other hand. it is the manner of treating subject matter that presents clear description of everyday life experiences. thought. Realism in Art In the notion of beauty and style in the art. though they are certainly distinct from one another (Ruckstuhl. It is for this reason that the study would make use of the idea of realism as it applies to the arts. Idealism. semi-ideal realistic and idealistic. or by adding or diminishing away something from the form. the spiritualization of subject.

we have the “The Spolarium” by Juan Luna. but we could see an ideal. what we commonly called. I). in a means of imitating the objects and by which how they imitate it (Ruckstuhl. is always a work of Idealism – because it expresses some sort of ideas. Imitation. since we assume that everything stems out from an idea primarily.). The subjects and the depiction of the painting was not actually the certain situation that is actually happening during the time it was made. For example. which is said to be one of the most celebrated paintings by a Filipino. we could always ask the question. from baking a wedding cake to constructing a house. scene. It is for a reason that.of the art should be. by definition. The arts do not vary significantly except that they all just are imitations. of any object. Therefore. once mentioned in his “Aristotle. 1917). Realism in art is the copying or imitating practically. Just like when a monkey inside a cage imitates the action of a boy who is fond of watching him. And in this kind of realism is what I actually holds dear.” stressing of Aristotle’s idea of the aim of art: . there is no such thing as a complete work of art that can be categorized as a piece of realism in the totality of art – since every human work. or let say Ideal which is created by the artist. is realism in art is just the basic imitation of anything? Then. action.“That is the aim of Art. it has become the realization of some kind of an Idea. is a thing intended to simulate or copy something else. . What is the principle of it? This particular principle garnered diverse speculations and interpretations and has produced matter for so many debates: is Imitation. we would always fall to the notion of art as defined by Idealism. Why does the discussion of Realism matters in our examination about art? Because there are some human works that fall under the category of. The actual passage is very clear to us and devoid of vagueness: ‘All arts are imitations’ (Poet. However. or drama in nature. or conception. Idealistic-Realism (Ibid. in a large sense. As Charles Bernard.

especially in arts. Our examination of the philosophy is not only directed towards our understanding of the meaning of both concepts as conceived independently. we wish to recognize that the totality of the philosophy speaks about an attitude – it is the manner or the outlook of every person on how he or she sees life as part of his or her realizations. and real in its execution. so well composed. We can divide the sense of the painting as to the composition being ideal. The former speaks about a set of principles concerned with the appreciation of beauty. is that it sends a stronger sense of communal message more than any other type of realism. the definite representations of the forms of nature in any subject that was chosen. and second. by means of imitation. The combination of the two concepts openly channels us to the philosophy of Aesthetic Realism. superbly painted. especially to that of forms with the utmost possible truth to nature. There is indeed a noticeable connection between aesthetics and realism. In a nutshell. The painting speaks of realities. rather. with notably truthful aura. the latter tells about the attempt of arts to represent subject matters as truthful as possible. everything that is imitated with a truth to nature is barely equaled to what is being copied. . more than just ideals. However. we may now define Realism as follows: Realism in art means. which were in fact transpired during those periods of time. except only the composition. Luna imagined or created nothing. On the surface. without artificiality. first: the selection of a subject dealing with things and human activities of a commonplace truth of nature. On one hand. And as for the reason for focusing on this type.subject or story. especially that the application of this examination is directed towards addressing binary opposing elements such as racism that involves different ethnicities and cultures.

of bringing some satisfaction to ourselves. one must incorporate the philosophy’s maxim which is the making one of opposites.Aesthetic Realism as an Attitude towards Life Aesthetic Realism was founded by Eli Siegel in 1941. First. thus. Contempt is the feeling that a person or a thing is beneath consideration. The first success of contempt is the feeling in people that they have the right to see other people and things pretty much as they pleased. or undeserving. And third. In other words. the study of what makes for beauty in art is a guide for a good and complete life. Second. as Aesthetic Realism sees it. the goal of Aesthetic Realism is to abstain from it. To achieve the goal. the immediate aesthetic experience it manifests. a poem.The philosophy has three core principles: First. Most people have felt that there is no need for such obligation to see other people and other objects in a way that seemed to go with comfort – this reality is the beginning of the injustice and pain of the world. for example. hideous form. It is contempt in its first universal. worthless. one must not succumb to contempt. means to say. it should always begin with the human obligation to see everything in a positive and accurate basis. the greatest danger for a person to refrain from appreciation is to have contempt. is to see something just like a sunset. the deepest desire of every person is to view the world on an honest and in an accurate basis. Aesthetic Realism states that in every ethical consideration. which is actually a by-product of our reality and stands for the . and that the making one of opposites is what we should go for ourselves. for it brings negativity and injustice which will cause a person to dislike his view about life and the world as a whole. a concerto. Siegel provides two means.

1981). or of sameness and difference. time. and structure in mind. as the aesthetic oneness of opposites. For example. This is according to him the aesthetic victory – which is the most sensible of all victories (Siegel. then. change and sameness at once – since we are all part of the reality. sameness and change. like music. as perhaps deeper.” It can also happen that music is felt always as oneness of motion and rest.world that which pleases us through what it is: its space. A person. It is always to view the world as positive as possible. as it presents the instances as sociable to a person. For Siegel. and a hope not to miss anything which tells what the world is. he is at once at rest and in motion. is unabashed philosophy. Therefore. you are moving and still you are what you are at 3’oclock in the afternoon. we should also look at ourselves as a change and motion at once. 1981) . wider. for every moment of person’s life. change and sameness at once. and more oneself or realist than thought (Siegel. It is clear that reality is in motion and rest at once. If that is the premise. Aesthetic Realism is personally useful especially for character development. Aesthetic Realism. if I ask someone if I am in motion this afternoon at 3’oclock. is just an example of aesthetic reality. Aesthetic Realism sees all reality including the reality that is oneself. and if I am still the person I was – the answer would be: “Precisely.

such as “order. and it has other instrumental functions. proportion. Art and Pleasure Some philosophers have argued that the value of art is necessarily connected with pleasure or enjoyment because. Thus. an aesthetic experience could produce a mixture of feelings such as rage. joy. they argue. and pleasure. grief.” It can also be understood through intuition experienced with human feeling and emotion. suffering.Chapter 3 Art and its Aesthetic Function There have been numerous accounts coming from various philosophers who said that even reason could not explain the abstract notion of beauty. a painting. the concept of beauty must have some rational properties. It is of the rightmost concern to study various theories of art in order to grasp what is essentially relevant in our quest to prove that art evokes aesthetic function. The best known philosopher to hold this view is the . to say that a poem. and symmetry. a play or a piece of music is good is a way of saying that it pleases us. These various theories could be used in order to aid our understanding about art and aesthetics in general. For Aristotle. Here lies the concept of Aesthetic Hedonism which answers the question ‘what makes art valuable?’ – is that we see art as a source of pleasure or enjoyment for our self and to others.

not objective. a German philosopher Immanuel Kant on The Critique of Judgment developed an objectivist approach when it comes to beauty and generally as it applies to art. that pertains to ‘of Tragedy’. 1711) Art and Beauty Contrary to the subjectivist view towards art.Scottish philosopher David Hume (1711-76). it is turned into pleasure by the artistry with which the events are depicted (Hume. they still are connected with enjoyment or pleasure. or even paintings that includes events that will horrify them. and it is at all times. and Hume thinks that the wide variety of opinions regarding art that we find in this world is a verification of this fact. aesthetics preferences are expressions of the taste of observer. However. Our feeling about pleasure and moral goodness does differ from our feelings about beauty in that . by their very nature. about someone’s sentiment. Moreover. he finds it puzzling that some people would willingly watch plays. He calls aesthetic judgments ‘judgment of taste’ and note that though tastes are based in an individual’s subjective feelings. wherever a man is conscious of it (Hume 1963: 238). where dreadfulness of the event is on the emphasis. they also claim universal validity. The ‘judgments’ whether we perceive art as good or bad are not actually judgments at all mainly because sentiments has reference to nothing beyond itself. So to say. Aesthetic opinion is essentially subjective. He explained that the horribleness of the events would naturally repel us. not its intrinsic nature. In his essay entitled ‘Of the Standard of Taste’ he argues that ‘agreeableness’ is the most important thing about art. it is about the pleasure we obtain from it. and at least some artistic sentiments are not discountable. poems. not a description or statements about a certain art.

Kant argues that our sense of the sublime is connected with our faculty of reason. While the appeal of beautiful objects is immediately apparent.). Apprehending sublime objects puts us in touch with these ideas of reason. that is both the feeling of the artist and the emotional impact of the art in its audience. so as to say in the case for having a tastes. aesthetic pleasure comes from the free play between imagination and understanding when perceiving an object (1970). they are nothing compared with reason’s ideas of absolute totality and freedom. but we originally appreciate beauty without feeling driven to find some use for it. and we seek to promote moral goodness. so that sublimity resides not in sublime objects but in reason itself (Ibid. Tolstoy noted that if pleasure is the commonplace explanation of the value of art. so our aesthetic response applies universally. Art and Emotion Others would also have argued that what matters most in art is the emotion it emanates. He later explained that judgments of taste are universal because they are disinterested: our individual desires or needs have no effect when we appreciate beauty. too great to get our heads around. It is for the explanation that we seek to possess pleasurable objects. expression of emotion . Kant was able to distinguish the beautiful from the sublime. the movement of storm clouds or a massive building is sublime: they are. While a Greek statue or a pretty flower is beautiful. However.they are disinterested. While storm clouds or a massive building might stretch our minds. which has ideas of absolute totality and absolute freedom. in a sense. the sublime holds a cloud of mystery and ineffability.

sculpting. First. It emphasizes that intense emotion is an authentic source of aesthetic experience. the notion that art enriches human understanding makes it relatively easy to explain the place of art in every culture. The mark of its embodiment is that it motivates the same emotion in its audience. to embody that emotion in a work of art. hands on to others feelings he has lived through. We see art classes in various universities that intend to enhance .” Artists are inspired by their experience of deep emotion. that one man consciously by means of certain external signs. “Art is a human activity consisting in this. the artist then is able to communicate emotional experience. Of course artists often have ‘messages’ that they hope to intend to convey. We can infer that a work of art is sometimes actually to enhance our level of cognition or understanding. Art and Understanding It is undeniable that any work of art has cognitive value. because these shows that there is a good reason to continue in trying to solve the problem that cognition and art encounters. or in music. A more integral relationship between artistry and understanding can be found on some work of arts that contain selfconscious statements and elaborates information. There are several advantages that cognitivism enjoys as an explanation of the value and importance of art.is the commonplace value of its very nature. and so they use their skills on painting. and that others are infected by these feelings and also experience them (Tolstoy in Neill and Ridley 1995: 511).

1997). and the understanding it delivers. And fourth.student knowledge about their culture and that would made them intelligible in conversing for that matter. The philosopher D. Each of these aspects of art has its own dynamics. ‘art for art’s sake’ but we should be able to comprehend the dynamics of art: its notion of beauty. Gotshalk points to the dynamic interaction between these theories based on his universal criteria. The purpose of discussing these theories is that we simply want to build with them. Second. form. We should not limit ourselves with the cliché. then we can describe a work as the exploration of theme without any conceptual language deficiency (Graham. aesthetic cognitivism enables us to make sense of an important range of critical vocabulary. the purpose of art in this perspective is to create an aesthetic arena that is conscious of politics and relates to emancipation. as explained and elaborated previously. cognitivism can make someone’s undertaking a lifetime commitment to art. Third. it enables us to explain the way we discriminate between works of art. and the function of art in society. or a poet. the emotion it expresses. It is also the same way as saying that an experiment is judged more importantly than another with the light of its contribution to wider intellectual concerns. because if art can deepen our understanding. the sensation it emanates. Thus. we view art as a source of understanding. materials. dedication for art is worth living.W. but when they come together creates a powerful interaction . In result. a composer. These propositions we established lead us to interpret the dynamics and meaning of art. for example as a painter. so therefore a piece of art can intelligibly be said to be more profound if it enhances our understanding . particularly in music. and with this. He describes these criteria in terms of the interaction of expression.

1947). etc. causality and teleology – and these are universal forms.” Art manifests these forms. is of course inadequate. we should eliminate the error of judging it ideally. “The materials of the artist – the pigments. The proper resolution in the differences in these materials (as red vs. and sheen. thus. the duty of art is to bring the forms of art a material dimension and to generate the aesthetic experience. marble has its contrarieties in grain. tension and resolution. and its material dimension should be scrutinized.” The connection of the materials and other categories such as its form and expression is also a necessary point of reference especially when judging a particular piece of art. etc. In sculpture. A . What we need to secure is a criteria essentially on the aesthetic form to take the proceeding step in looking at art as it presented to us. slower in music) is critical to understanding a work of art. We should constantly view art as the synergy of these ideas so as to generate a clear manifestation of what is really the function of art in the society. and a lot more. as quoted above. and that they need to support one another. or as faster vs. In painting. In music. What are the principles behind that expresses this so called “Aesthetic form?” Gotshalk would say that the form of every art work expresses various principles. the aesthetic use of the “tools”.and conviction. color. timbre. and volume and they must find an aesthetic connection. development. timbre. which according to him are “the structure of human existence. tones. and usually involved with the artist’s intent. – are part of the artist’s tools. pigments have different hues and values of intensity that must be brought together to create an aesthetic experience. Plato once argued that the form of the art faces the problem of space and time. These universal forms can be a basis for creating the specific aesthetic form that we are aiming for. centrality. marble. texture. however. blue in painting. In creating a work of art these contrasting qualities must join aesthetically (Gotshalk. Examples of these principles are balance. tones contrast in pitch. Gotshalk clearly pointed it out that for us to judge art. harmony.

The principle of centrality on the other hand becomes apparent when “an ensemble of items is so connected that one item or group is given aesthetic dominance over the others. . but the dynamics still remain.work of art for example a song. The artists may produce an art consciously or unconsciously. For example. or a sculpture – exhibits unity based on these principles. the ‘form’ must connect reasonably with the ‘expression’ in the work of art. To proceed with the steps on establishing the criteria.99. but development is an arrangement of items as prior or posterior as it manifests progression. the principle of development. a painting. a play. the principle of balance and harmony are the reverse of each other. 1962). Balance achieves unity by the virtue of contrast. as balance emphasizes ‘diversity in unity. as to contrast to other principles is based on novelty as opposed to harmony’s dependence on repetition. which is solely based on stability. The opposing principles appear to form a system of neutralizing tensions to produce that unity. Moreover. the underlying principles in the use of ‘materials’ and ‘form’ must then bear that expression. However. The aforementioned principles are the chief principles of form that are usually used by artists for the enhancement of perception (p. idea. achieves unity by recurring in the artwork. a riff that is used in the song Smells like Teen Spirit by the band Nirvana. which are universal to art. furthermore in music.g. e. Centrality is obviously based on hierarchical order. for example.’ and harmony emphasizes ‘unity in diversity’. Gotshalk would mean that “it is great wealth of content – the feelings. in a dance. Harmony. it is based on disequilibrium as opposed to balance. character. a certain tone or chord or even riffs may dominate over the other. By ‘expression’ in a work of art. An example of this is Giotto’s Madonna Enthroned with its dominant mother and child. since certain aspects oppose and equalize each other. and personality – lying behind the material surface” and within its structured form. the body must express moving sensations of lightness.” which are still important but subordinate to it.

race. and nationality. coherence. We have to crossexamine the connection of art to society with more accuracy and as rigid as possible. and that includes gender. loveliness. the reason why this particular study of Aesthetic Realism and the Art involves the method of participant observation which engages everyone to be conscious of. The people or the spectator of the art is required to open up their eyes since beauty can be virtually anything. the form. or uncertainty. the dynamics between the materials. However. swiftness. and it has to go in and be part of the their life. power. And so on (Ibid). and alluringness. there is more to tackle about art in terms of culture. This means to say that we have to link aesthetics and the art with sociology to examine variable norms that is important in this study. floating and falling. For the last proposition. In painting. there are certain colors and texture needed to express tenderness. . so as to address certain political issues specifically prejudice and discrimination that is still prevalent nowadays. Of course each culture requires study for how aesthetic principles apply in their context. and the expression of art must be evaluated in what is its real function in the society. As Gotshalk’s analysis taught us. class. we should anticipate some political issues that lie ahead. the principles of art should stand solidly in the field of aesthetics.fluidity. we should also be wary that if we link art and its aesthetic function to the society. In music. a harmonious combination of instruments is required to express melancholy. sparkle. Hence. liveliness.

Second. sometimes often valued for this reason. architecture. These differences in the value of art. sculpture. the value of this form quickly leads us to the understanding of our environment or reality because it has been said that a song written by an artist’s is a representation of what transpired in his reality. it is often regarded as a widely accepted powerful tool for the expression of emotion and insights. We refer to these facts depending on the form of the art it shows. it could be through a matter of taste. Moreover. and often credited as art in its purest form. Furthermore. a provocative music can and does give pleasure. it provides explanation of the value of art by understanding the ‘song’ itself and the artist satisfactorily. It is also unquestionable that.Chapter IV Aesthetic Realism in the Music of Asin The value of art depends on the aesthetic judgments we had given. and the study of Aesthetic Realism believes that the value of music holds much dear compare to other forms. the discussion up to this point will be concerning the respective importance of pleasure. poetry. There are several reasons for why this study chose music as its medium. beauty. and so on. as . it is regarded as one of the established art. emotion. what he thought. whatever facts or explanation it may hold to be true. and cognition. beauty and insight in general. we lay down that the value of it has to be respected. is an issue that has to be examined in order for a more detailed way in relation to each and what it represents for. for instance. Nevertheless. Music is a different medium from drama. First. As discussed in Chapter 2 and 3. and what he felt.

Tausug of Sulu.) Himig ng Pag-ibig.) Ang Bayan kong Sinilangan. The aim of this chapter is to elucidate the notion that music holds as a powerful medium in the light of Aesthetic Realism in our quest to offer a solution in addressing prejudice and discrimination. The group was also able to penetrate the consciousness of the masses by connecting their arts’ message that is either explicit or implicit. and environmental advocacies. and as a result. and so on. so as to capture what were really the evocative emotions during that period. They had taken respect and admiration for Filipino indigenous music. what they did was to offer genuine ‘Original Pinoy Music’ that is essentially rooted from the music of ethnical minorities from different regions in the Philippines. the thesis would dwell on the analysis of the songs written and performed by one of the most iconic and patriotic Filipino folk rock bands formed in the 1970’s which we popularly known as Asin. such as the Ifugao’s of Cordillera. From here. especially on the atrocious event that was transpired during the time of Martial Law which most of the people deemed as one of the darkest time of the country. so as to view the world as positively as possible.) Gising na Kaibigan.other musicians and composers have attributed to it as a meaningful means to reveal something about human life and experience. Mangyans of Mindoro. and 3. political. The thesis identified three of their songs that best exemplify what the philosophy of aesthetic realism is all about. these are: 1. imitated possible state of affairs and had put it in the lyrics of their songs. 2. The band is recognized for incorporating local tribal instruments into their music. what the band did was to construct songs that would tap on the awareness of the people. through producing songs that invoke social. From that social reality. .

As a result. one must learn to forgive and forget religious and political differences. the mood starts to change when the person who is narrating seems to suggest reconciliation through mutual understanding and respect for one another: “Ako’y nananawagan.” “Ang Bayang kong Sinilangan” I presume is a fine example of music that purely speaks about the social reality that is happening today. The song delivers a very provocative call for peace and unity amongst two opposing forces. The song relates to us that the process of deterring from contempt in order to view the world as positively as possible should always be mindful of . A nation that is estranged largely because of geo-political and religious differences is apparent. but they fight among themselves. kasing gulo ng mundo.” The narrator merely describes it as troubled as humanity. the point of view comes from a person who is said to be born in Cotabato. and according to him these are disagreements in religion and principles.In the song Ang Bayang kong Sinilangan. we are still one as countrymen of the nation. isipin mong siya’y may puso rin katulad mo. at the latter part. the spill of blood and deaths of innocents have to occur – which according to him are pointless and illogical. The person seems confused and disoriented why it happens. The song also speaks of a battle between fellowmen. and as chaotic as a dystopian society. the practice of prejudice and discrimination is of utmost concern since it can result into disparities and biases towards some race and ethnicities. Hence. The lyrics of the song narrate how disordered the world is: “Kasing gulo ng tao. at the last part of the verse “Ituring mong isang kaibigan. humihingi ng tulong nyo. He straightforwardly pinpoints to the reasons as to why his birthplace is like that. It expresses the struggle of Moro brothers in the Southern Philippines. and it delivers a strong message to reconcile differences and to create harmony with one another since at the end of the day.” Everyone who is in conflict should throw away their prejudice and discrimination and must create harmony among them. However. who in fact are brothers.

The verse apparently talks about the actions of man in understanding what the composer intends to convey. The concept of cultural identity speaks basically of what should be the approach on dealing with this particular problem that is greatly rooted from varying culture. the use of a universal link which the thesis presumed can be examined in music particularly in this work. is what the song Gising na Kaibigan ko merely put forward to. the culture and beliefs of the group involved. In the chorus. Consequently. “Kalagan na ang tali sa paa. Imulat na ang iyong mga mata. He/she refers to the addressee as ‘kaibigan’ which we denotatively defined as someone with whom one has a bond of mutual affection. “Gising na kaibigan ko. for example. or the special atmosphere created by an imagery of a particular environment of the song.the causes and must identify different factors as to why this particular treatment occurs. nagawa mo na ba ang mga bagay na dapat mong ginawa.” the composer plainly asks the listeners of what was it that they did or what they will be doing in the future by questioning the things they have done in their life. It also follows that the ambiance. and with this. so that as the last line of the first verse suggests. it addresses its audience in an arena wherein the message of the song tries to invoke persuasive expression so as to invoke change in his course of actions.” seems to be an insight of the composer to what should be the outlook a person must have in his life. ganda ng buhay ay nasa sa’yo. therefore. we clearly cross-out the attitude of contemplation which is largely discouraged in our study of Aesthetic Realism. To veer away from contempt. seems . In the first verse.” It directs its subjects eventually to have a purpose and a goal in their life. which is one of the tenets of Aesthetic Realism. “Nakita mo na ba ang dapat mong makita. “Kay sarap ng buhay lalo na at alam mo kung saan pupunta.” is somehow a call for people to emancipate their minds and do something what they deem is necessarily good.

It does not necessarily mean ‘eros’ [romantic love] but it also taps those who are in ‘philia’ [brotherly love] which is also the love between two friends who are ‘like brothers’. “Tulad ng tubig sa batis hinahagkan ng hangin. Likewise. In simple words. . In the 2nd verse. one must not be a perpetrator of prejudice and discrimination since these bring injustice and negativity towards a person and the world as a whole. inspires us to understanding that life is full of kindness and honesty. And for someone who would perceive the music. pag-ibig ang ilaw sa buhay natin. to give insight. tulad ng langit na kay sarap marating. might come up into a realization that having contempt to the world which eventually leads to discrimination and meaningless opposition is not a path to take into consideration because it is morally unjustifiable. It encourages us to listen for it gives us the pleasure because of the harmony it emanates and at the same time it expresses an attitude that is basically to view the world as positive as possible. the song Himig ng Pag-ibig. to appreciate. to express. the line “Tulad ng ibong malaya ang pag-ibig natin. What is it that you do will certainly define your character as a moral agent. the interlude which has the words of. In effect.” we are asked to appreciate that the beauty of our actions or whatever you believe makes you the person that you are. “La la la la La la la…” along the instrumentation gives the listeners a somberly impressive mood that causes some serious thoughts in the appreciation of life which for a reason.” it purely implies that affection which was referred as ‘pag-ibig’ is for everyone. I think the aesthetic function of the whole song.in a lighter mood which specifically made intentional for it brings solemnity and stillness on the harmony of the song for it produce the aesthetic experience it is meant for. Furthermore. it is the commitment of a person to see everything as honest and positive. it brought us to the notion that in every ethical consideration. As the 2nd to the last line of 2nd verse implies. and to encourage positive outlook towards our social reality.

man’s greatest and deepest desire is to like the world on a positive basis. Gising na Kaibigan. a meaningful means for this. is to understand that music. which are in fact words connotatively exemplifies the principles of Aesthetic Realism as it performs aesthetic function on unifying meaningless oppositions.Aesthetic realism. the only way to have a positive outlook. in general. were all indisputably meaningful examples of music that adhere to each of the principles of the philosophy aforementioned. music can be. via inducing positive social and political messages to the songs. particularly conflicting emotions within the status of society. there have been commonalities in the lyrics of the songs. Two. is to see the world as the aesthetic oneness of opposites. . To understand the works of Asin.” “kaibigan. and truly expressed by a person to other person. has this tripartite principle. can be of essential use which Aesthetic Realism renders to offer. Each of these songs tries to address conflicting aspects or qualities of reality.that is to get a false importance of glory caused by self-centeredness and intolerance. and Himig ng Pag-ibig. every person can overcome prejudice and discrimination and have a true kindness in their outlook towards life. sincerity is felt. more than ever before. The three specific Asin songs that the study chosen.” and so on. For when that coherence is established. the usage of terms such as: “pagmamahal. respectively.” “malaya. Therefore. as mentioned on Chapter 2. And three. Besides. One. Ang Bayan kong Sinilangan. the greatest danger for a man is to be a victim of contempt .

unlike judgments about the niceness and goodness of for example the music of Asin. is based on ‘pleasure’. In chapter 3. Agreeableness is only a matter of whether a work of art gives pleasure. some potential questions may arise: how do we reconcile these differences? Is there a particular standard of beauty that we should adhere to? Do we have to objectively look at this approach in dealing with aesthetic experiences? This chapter aims to address these possible difficulties that lie ahead. the opinion of beauty. otherwise. the realist would say that. And since we are talking about an ‘experience’. that the judgment of taste. in aesthetic pleasure. basically the sensible contact with observations of facts or phenomena. and Aesthetic Realism From the discussions of previous chapters. Subjectivism. Especially for this study that deals with aesthetic experiences. hence. The essence of being a realist is truthfully directed towards the actual experience of the subject matter. the essential content of it must . it represents events or objects as possessing aesthetic properties. especially in our study that involves arts. aesthetic judgments are solely based on pleasure. we are already confined on the notion that Aesthetic Realism as a philosophical reflection merits actual more than thought. that is. This particular theory or idea of aesthetics is a clear frontrunner of subjectivism. the problem is that we may fall on the idea that experiences varies from one person to another. it is not agreeable. it was discussed as one of the classic theories of art. Furthermore. A realist would say that. we embrace to believe that a person holds the right to judge a particular form of art as beautiful or not.Chapter V Aesthetic Experiences.

1928) as opposed to the former theory. have no aesthetic content. Besides from the fact that it pleases our hearing. in a sense that it encapsulates aesthetic contents. and agreement. A realist account of pleasure would be something that is realistic and representational in content. The appeal to aesthetic content helps us to distinguish aesthetic pleasure from pleasures that has no content and from pleasures that has non-aesthetic contents. This. ‘interested’ pleasures. it should be a special kind of experience that is endowed with representations and actualizations. which bound up by desires. It is for a reason that we cannot actually assume that the existence of aesthetic concepts and contents implies a realist account of pleasure. although it is true that the realist must say at least that. on the examples of songs that were aforementioned. Yet. For example. How then we should describe aesthetic realism? Is it only a matter of judgment of taste? a matter of subjectivism? To widen the scope of the philosophy. we also discussed about Kant’s Critique of Judgement (Kant. By these .be purely aesthetic. happiness. that our aesthetic experiences of the world are embodies genuine aesthetic properties. these particular kind of music delivers factual and representational pleasure which we actually wishes to accomplish – the pleasure of being in a state of satisfaction. grasping the idea of nonaesthetic contents is not distinctive of the approach the realist follows. Second. events. facts. First. A realist account of pleasure is not dwelling on the idea of sensuous pleasure. which has no content at all – say for example the pleasure of being near in a fireplace to keep you warmth when the weather is too cold. I argue that the focus of our understanding should not only be limited to aesthetic experience. which is of course sensual. Kant espouses that aesthetic pleasure is not similar to what we might think as sensuous pleasure. it comforts from pleasures that are valuable in content. the aesthetic pleasure it holds is greater than that sensuous pleasure it brings. in turn. means to say that our experiences should represent aesthetic state of affairs. In contrast. and so on.

Aesthetic realism. seems to be a moral philosophy. These particular aesthetic judgments are deriving from our aesthetic experiences which of course bring us to our feelings of emotional response.experiences. it results into our aesthetic judgments. which of the two is more plausible? As discussed above. moral judgments can be derived from our moral belief which need not be experiential. . and we judge the song as indeed passionate. passion. when a child listens to her mother not to steal because it is immoral. on one hand. It is. Now if we compare aesthetic judgment to moral judgment. and must always be associated with feelings and emotions. and so on. a realist view of music. So a realist would say that it is what it means to appreciate and understand music. On the other hand. What do I mean by this? This means to say that we represent sounds as having certain properties that are musical. we appreciate and comprehend it if and only if we deem it as passionate. thus. for example. in the song Himig ng Pag-ibig. the study of Aesthetic realism is all about directed towards inner-morality and appreciation for aesthetics and arts. The thesis wishes to supplement aesthetics to morality for it holds a promising solution to the problems presented and discussed by the study. the melody is passionate. anger. to experience the sounds as possessing the aesthetic content that in fact they possess. the content of our aesthetic experience of music is the representation of a musical state of affairs. such as beauty. For instance. The child may develop a moral belief of not stealing because it is bad even though he or she may have not experienced it yet. first. which also must have representational factual content. For example. It is for a fact that it prescribes moral conduct and principles. aesthetic judgment must be a realistic affair. to judge the sounds possess by these properties. we wish not to discriminate morality from aesthetics because from the start. harmony. And second. elegant. Nevertheless.

there would always be ethical considerations to follow especially that various cultures follow different norms and beliefs. what we are sure of is that the use of art music in particular as medium for affecting lives and practices of people is evident and instrumental in a sense that it renders communal values especially directed to those people who are victims of prejudice and discrimination. a bulldog. Of course. in particular racism.” The principle seems to be illogical in every context because when you come to think of it. do not actually begin with an attitude to people because of their skin color.Chapter VI Conclusion The philosophy of Aesthetic Realism suggests that an optimistic view of the world is what we should aim for. it actually begin with our ordinary contempt to people for what we think that they are different from us. The core doctrine of the philosophy: “All beauty is making one of opposites. and the making of one opposite is what we are going after in ourselves. Just like dogs. This horrid issues. a labrador dog. and the husky dog? These were all dogs that only differ in sizes and personalities yet they still in the same species. what the philosophy prescribes to us is to render a positive outlook towards the world and disregards the notion of having contempt to someone. . I would like to play on the idea that ‘Humans are different and the same’. However. what more of different in aspect than a terrier dog. how would someone reconciles oppositions when in fact the very essence of it is irreconcilable? The answer for this question is not a matter of logical judgment or whatsoever. It is an unpleasant disposition in life to think and act on a person or a group of people that is different in so many ways – to isolate them on the existing system of customs of society.

The thesis wishes to supplement the resolution of some pressing social issues such as the struggle between the Philippine government and our Muslim brothers in establishing their identity on the Southern Philippines.We cannot reasonably doubt that whatever the breed of dog a certain dog might encounter. the study is directed to communal values of essentially every person. It is apt to affirm that the universal form and expression of the art and its function in the society can be a crucial lens. the feeling that looking down somebody else. and can be a meaningful venue for convergence of opposing ideas. is a victory towards contempt. the dog can recognize another dog. Gising na Kaibigan. It is the feeling that we see ourselves as more if we can see another as less. which the study wishes to lessen and avoid. By claiming that one’s ethnicity or race is more superior to the other. It seeks to enhance our understanding about the world and the moral values that governs it. if possible. The thesis hopes to achieve the aesthetic victory that it was presented which is to promote the convergence of ideas and aspirations so as to avoid destructive oppositions. In here lies the notion of ‘oneness of opposites’ – that is to see a person as another person just like you. Contempt. no matter how different they are. origin. or any animals can. social status. regardless of race. The study of Aesthetic Realism can be of a relevant consideration especially when creating a policy or regulation. and so on. It might not be that easy to achieve but it is so promising when realized. using of what we have in the form of successful and meaningful works of music such as: Ang Bayan kong Sinilangan. is assume to be the principal source of prejudice and discrimination which leads to an ideology which we refer as racism. As mentioned on the previous chapters. How much more of humans? Given that we are more rational and endowed with mental faculties that are needed to understand the world more than a dog. In simple words. the dog certainly does not doubt the entire identity of the species. The only difficulty here is that whether the subjects involved . and Himig ng Pag-ibig.

what the thesis did is to offer an alternative outlook using the study of aesthetics and the arts and offer a new perspective in addressing oppositions especially it seeks to enhance personal understanding with regards to what is beautiful and good. This is in view of the fact that discriminations our rampant whenever you go. the problem of prejudice and discrimination would be lessen and must be discouraged on a greater basis. This particular kind of approach I believe is no-nonsense to begin with. With the amount of songs that are being produced from time to time. And that at the end of the day. we wish to encourage that the production of this particular type of songs. . that which invokes certain kind of emotion and aspiration must be of our relevant concern.subscribe to the idea that the study presented. Nevertheless.