AFTERWORDS: AN INTRODUCTION TO ARTHUR DANTO'S PHILOSOPHIES OF HISTORY AND ART*

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  • *

    This is excerpted from Narration and Knowledge by Arthur Danto, Introduction by Lydia Goehr and conclusion by Frank Ankersmit. copyright © 2007 Columbia University Press. Used by arrangement with Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

ABSTRACT

This essay is written as an introductory essay to celebrate the third edition of Arthur Danto's Analytical Philosophy of History, first printed in 1965. It raises questions about what it means to write an introduction and whether it is possible to write an introduction-given Danto's own philosophical theses on history, the essay pays special attention to the connections between Danto's philosophy of history, philosophy of art, and the other areas of his philosophy that he regards to be all of a piece. It considers the nature of analytical philosophy and its heyday in America in the postwar period, when, to some degree, it was used as an antidote to an ideology of history that had perverted some of the most influential claims in a philosophy of history developed in Germany (mostly by Hegel) around 1800.

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