What is art?/ Leo Tolstoy; translated by Alymer Maude

By: Tolstoy, Leo
Contributor(s): Maude, Alymer [translator]
Material type: TextTextPublisher: London: Bloomsbury, © 2016Description: 172 p.: 21 cmContent type: text, still image Media type: unmediated Carrier type: volumeISBN: 9781474265096Subject(s): Art | Art and morals | Arts and morals | Arts Philosophy | Visual artsLOC classification: N 70 | T654 2016Summary: "During the decades of his world fame as sage and preacher as well as author of War and Peace and Anna Karenin, Tolstoy wrote prolifically in a series of essays and polemics on issues of morality, social justice and religion. These culminated in What is Art?, published in 1898. Although Tolstoy perceived the question of art to be a religious one, he considered and rejected the idea that art reveals and reinvents through beauty. The works of Dante, Michelangelo, Shakespeare, Beethoven, Baudelaire and even his own novels are condemned in the course of Tolstoy's impassioned and iconoclastic redefinition of art as a force for good, for the progress and improvement of mankind. In his illuminating preface Richard Pevear considers What is Art? in relation to the problems of faith and doubt, and the spiritual anguish and fear of death which preoccupied Tolstoy in the last decades of his life."
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Item type Current location Collection Call number Status Date due Barcode Item holds
Books Books CIIT College of Arts and Technology
Multimedia Arts Section
Non-fiction N 70 T654 2016 (Browse shelf) Available 005288
Total holds: 0

Includes index


"During the decades of his world fame as sage and preacher as well as author of War and Peace and Anna Karenin, Tolstoy wrote prolifically in a series of essays and polemics on issues of morality, social justice and religion. These culminated in What is Art?, published in 1898. Although Tolstoy perceived the question of art to be a religious one, he considered and rejected the idea that art reveals and reinvents through beauty. The works of Dante, Michelangelo, Shakespeare, Beethoven, Baudelaire and even his own novels are condemned in the course of Tolstoy's impassioned and iconoclastic redefinition of art as a force for good, for the progress and improvement of mankind. In his illuminating preface Richard Pevear considers What is Art? in relation to the problems of faith and doubt, and the spiritual anguish and fear of death which preoccupied Tolstoy in the last decades of his life."

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