Schedule of Meetings and Readings
Tuesday, January 28 Introducing Taste as a Critical Category
Raymond Williams, “Taste.” In Keywords.
Thursday, January 30 Aesthetic Theories of Taste
Carolyn Korsmeyer, “Taste.” In The Routledge Companion to Aesthetics, 3rd ed. Gaut, Berys, and Dominic Lopes, eds. (pp. 257-266) Routledge, 2013.
David Hume, Of the standard of taste, and other essays. MacMillan Publishing Company, 1965 (1757).
Immanuel Kant, “Critique of Aesthetic Judgment.” In Critique of judgement. Edited by Nicholas Walker. Oxford University Press, 2007 (1790).
Tuesday, February 4 Sick Tastes and the Degenerate Race
Friedrich Nietzsche, Chapters 2 and 8 in Beyond Good and Evil, trans. Walter Kaufmann. New York: Vintage, 1966 (1886).
Max Nordau, “Friedrich Nietzsche” (excerpt); “The Dusk of Nations”; and “Symptoms.” In Degeneration [Entartung]. Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska, 1993 (1892).
Thursday, February 6 Aesthete Theories of Taste
Oscar Wilde. The decay of lying: A dialogue. Kegan Paul, Trench & Company, 1889.
Supplemental Reading: Max Nordau, “Ego-Mania” in Degeneration; and Joris-Karl Huysman, Selections from Against nature. ([A rebours]. 1884).
Tuesday, February 11 Social Theories of Taste: Consumption and Distinction
Pierre Bourdieu, excerpts from Distinction: A social critique of the judgement of taste. Routledge, 2013.
Thorstein Veblen, “Conspicuous Consumption,” “The Pecuniary Standard of Living” and “Pecuniary Canons of Taste” (The Theory of the Leisure Class: An Economic Study in the Evolution of Institutions ). In The Portable Veblen. Viking Press, 1948.
Thursday, February 13 Bad Taste on the Bul’var: Introducing Poshlost’
Vladimir Nabokov, “Philistines and Philistinism.” In Lectures on Russian Literature (1980): 309-14.
Vladimir Nabokov, excerpt from Nikolai Gogol. New York: New Directions, 1944; and Strong Opinions. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1973.
Gennadii Obatnin, “Two Hundred years of Poshlost: A Historical Sketch of the Concept.” In Understanding Russianness, ed. Risto Alapuro, et al. Routledge, 2014.
Supplemental Reading: Svetlana Boym, “Nostalgia, Kitsch and Death.” In The Future of Nostalgia. Basic Books, 2001.
Tuesday, February 18 Slap in the Face of Public Taste: The Russian Avant-garde
Leon Trotsky, excerpt of Literature and Revolution (pp. 462-466). In Theories of Modern Art. Berkeley: University of California Press , 1968.
Vladmir Mayakovsky, et al., “Slap in the Face of Public Taste” (1913), “We, Too, Want Meat!” (1914); “The LEF Program” (1923); David Burliuk et al., “Go to Hell!”; Sergei Tretiakov, “From Where to Where? (Futurism’s Perspectives).” In Anna Lawton and Herbert Eagle, eds. Words in Revolution: Russian Futurist Manifestoes, 1912-1928. New Academia, 2005.
Sergei Yutkevich, “We Prefer a Pinkerton Cover to the Concoctions of Picasso” (1922) In Kelly, Catriona, ed. Utopias: Russian modernist texts 1905-1940. Penguin Books, 1999.
Svetlana Boym, excerpts from Common Places: Mythologies of Everyday Life in Russia. Harvard UP: 1994, pp. 29-40; 56-73; 88-93.
Vladimir Lenin,“Against Futurism.” In The Lenin Anthology. WW Norton, 1975.
Thursday, February 20 The Frankfurt School on Mass Culture, Part II
Walter Benjamin, “Dream Kitsch”; “Some Remarks on Folk Art”; and “The work of art in the age of its technological reproducibility”; ” In The work of art in the age of its technological reproducibility, and other writings on media. Harvard University Press, 2008.
Supplemental Reading: Leah Dickerman, “Lenin in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction.” In Memory & Oblivion, pp. 1067-1073. Springer Netherlands, 1999.