The Worldview of Aesthetics

With my previous post I compared different views on aesthetics.

It were the views, as I understood them, from Kant, Adorno and Bohm.

But I did not compare their totality.

Now that is too difficult for me to do, as I only have a very general understanding of each of their views. But even if it is way over my head, I have this desire to find the essence of each of their views and compare them.

So in this post I will first define aesthetics and then see if I can find the essential difference between those three views. Or maybe not so much differences, as well different emphases on what they saw as important.

Definition of Aesthetics

– A philosophy dealing with the nature of beauty, art and taste.
– The creation and appreciation of beauty.
– The judgments of sentiment and taste.
– Critical reflection on art, culture and nature.


The emphasis of Kant is in a way rather static. Taste is subjective and you feel what you feel and your opinion is just that. But you can learn new things, which might alter your taste.

On the other hand he says there is beauty that is universal. And there is no such thing as an opinion about that.


With Adorno the emphasis is on the interaction between subject and object. Between artobject and observer. Their exchange is essential. An artobject is art because it is recognized and understood.


Bohm also talks about an interaction between object and subject. But he goes further. He talks about changing the patterns. Looking beyond the aesthetics and recognize differences and similarities.

Development in Worldviews

So the interaction of Adorno is a further developed view than the view of Kant. And the view of Bohm goes beyond the interaction of Adorno. It is not just an interaction, it is one influencing the other. It is not about consuming. It is about creating.

So …

there is a development from ‘a world out there that can be viewed’ (beauty) with your own reaction to that world (taste) where your taste can be altered

to …

an interaction between the world (artobject) and the individual (observer) where the world is altered by artists

to …

an interaction between the world beyond the aesthetics (maybe potentials on a quantum level) that can be altered by the individual.

In short

Kant: view can change, world can not change.

Adorno: view can change, world is changed by artists.

Bohm: view changes the world directly.

Very simplistic view on my part, but if I would not put it so brief, I get lost in words with their different meanings. I will try to write a better post later, that does more justice to each of the views, but for now this is my best understanding.

The worldview of aesthetics


    1. Glad it worked for you. The analysis was an attempt to understand it better myself. And I can only hope it makes sense to someone else. So good to hear it does!

    1. I also see beauty in simplicity. But I do have an inclination to simplify to soon, before I have a full understanding. I tried it several times before with aesthetics (when I just had the view of Kant and Adorno) but only after I read the view of Bohm, it started to make sense.

  1. Hi Annemieke,
    I go with Bohm, because erverybody is the creator of his own reality. What I see and what you see, when we look at the same thing/scene might not be the same. And if you don’t like what you see, it is yours to change your view, if you want to like it.

    So, not only artisans/artists change the world, it is you and each of us and our view of things.

    If you want to change the view of others, you have to take action. Help people to change their view by opening their conciousness and awareness (I think YOU do!) and you will become part of a creation beyond art and culture, but for humanness and compassionateness and understanding in the world.

    Love, peace and blessings to everyone out there!

    1. I agree that we have to become part of a creation beyond art and culture. Understanding the world is indeed so much more than our own cultural background.

      I am glad you think I can help people in changing their views. Which is at the same time my main concern. I really think it is essential to only trigger something that is already there to be recognised. And not to impose my view upon someone.

      And what you say about changing your view about something you don’t like, I think has to do with some old saying that goes somewhere along the line of ‘change what you can, accept what you can not change and learn to know the difference’.

      But the part that we can change might be so much more than we realise.

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