University of Illinois, Chicago
Department of Philosophy
PhD, 1985
Tucson, Arizona, United States of America
Areas of Specialization
Value Theory
Other Academic Areas
PhilPapers Editorships
Feminist Aesthetics
  •  1
    Camus's the Plague: Philosophical Perspectives
    Oxford University Press, Usa. 2023.
    La Peste, originally published in 1947 by the Nobel Prize-winning writer Albert Camus, chronicles the progression of deadly bubonic plague as it spreads through the quarantined Algerian city of Oran. While most discussions of fictional examples within aesthetics are either historical or hypothetical, Camus offers an example of "pestilence fiction." Camus chose fiction to convey facts--about plagues in the past, his own bout with tuberculosis at age seventeen, living under quarantine away from ho…Read more
  •  261
    Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 48 (4): 277-280. 1990.
    This is the co-authored--with Carolyn Korsmeyer--Introduction to the first published feminist scholarship in The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism (Volume 48, Number 4, Fall 1990). Contributors included Hilde Hein, Paul Mattick, Jr., Timothy Gould, Joanne B. Waugh, Joseph Margolis, Mary Devereaux, Noel Carroll, Flo Leibowitz, Anita Silvers, Elizabeth Ann Dobie, Renee Cox, and Ellen Handler Spitz. All essays were subsequently published in an expanded book version entitled, Feminism and Trad…Read more
  •  199
    The Beauty of the Game
    with Myles Brand
    In Jerry Walls (ed.), Basketball and Philosophy, The University Press of Kentucky. pp. 94-103. 2007.
    Imagine a deep philosophical conversation about a beautiful shot by a college player in a Final Four basketball game!
  •  58
    This paper explores the role of 1980s to early 1990s feminist theory of art within the analytic philosophical tradition of aesthetics starting with a critique of the noncontextual criticism of aesthetics of Jerome Stolnitz and Monroe Beardsley contrasted with contextual feminist theory, informed by contextual theories of Arthur Danto, George Dickie and Marcia Eaton, and concluding that knowledge of external, contextual data is necessarily required to assess a work of art that has been deemed a w…Read more
  •  58
    Feminism and Aesthetics in Contemporary American Art
    American Studies 15 133-146. 1997.
    What is feminist art? Can an ordinary viewer experience it in a neutral, detached, and objective way? These two questions are the focus of this essay which attempts to bridge a gap between philosophical aesthetics and feminist theorizing about women's art. The first question is purely historical, easily answered by means of a brief overview of the past twenty-five years of feminist art in America. The second question raises philosophical issues squarely within the realm of aesthetics, contingen…Read more
  •  1
    Changing Perceptions of Beautiful Bodies: The Athletic Agency Model
    In Andrew Edgar & William Morgan (eds.), Somaesthetics and Sport, . forthcoming.
    I consider what draws us to perceiving beautiful bodies in art and athletics--repeatedly and over time--that is informed by viewers' changing perceptions derived from recent publications in fashion and sport, the philosophy of sport, feminist film theory and aesthetics under the ever-expanding umbrella of somaesthetics.
  •  1
    Feminist Criticism: On Disturbatory Art and Beauty
    In Lydia Goehr & Jonathan Gilmore (eds.), A Companion to Arthur Danto. forthcoming.
    Arthur C. Danto, philosopher and art critic for The Nation from 1984-2009, offered interpretations of artworks by a wide array of artists, including Eva Hesse, Judy Chicago, and Cindy Sherman, whose "disturbatory" works were either ignored or denounced by mainstream critics at the time. Danto's championing of feminist art was deliberate and delightful; he openly endorsed the Guerilla Girls! His feminist art critical writings ultimately shaped the early development of what has come to be known as…Read more
  •  173
    VIRTUAL BEAUTY: Orlan and Morimura
    L and B (Lier En Boog) 16 92-104. 2001.
    This essay offers some thoughts on the editors' (Annette w. Balkema and Henk Slager) project "Exploding Aesthetics" with the goal of extending aesthetics based on a specific type of artistic output. Both artists--Orlan and Morimura--have already expanded the normal parameters of artistic inquiry and the resulting critical discourse. As an aesthetician, I merely offer some elaboration and philosophical backdrop to their creative enterprise. They constitute the paradigm of the avant-garde artist e…Read more
  •  77
    ORLAN Revisited: DIsembodied Virtual Hybrid Beauty
    In Peg Zeglin Brand (ed.), Beauty Unlimited. pp. 306-340. 2012.
    This essay offers an update on the author's thoughts on the French feminist performance artist ORLAN, analyzing her visual representations as a new category of feminist visual art, namely, virtual hybrid beauty.
  •  60
    Bound to Beauty: An Interview with Orlan
    In Peg Zeglin Brand (ed.), Beauty Matters. pp. 289-313. 2000.
    The feminist performance art of the controversial French artist named Orlan is discussed in this interview with the artist.
  •  96
    Beauty as Pride: A Function of Agency
    APA Newsletter on Philosophy and Medicine 2 (10): 5-9. 2011.
    This paper (presented along with others at an APA session with the late Dr. Anita Silvers commenting) explores and engages a mode of defiant challenges to the traditional, able-bodied standard of female beauty evidenced throughout the history of art as portrayed by the controversial photographer, Joel-Peter Witkin. Witkin's images of Ann Millett-Gallant, author of the book, The Disabled Body in Contemporary Art, "visualize disability" as they explore issues in agency, otherness, and the medical …Read more
  •  197
    Misleading Aesthetic Norms of Beauty: Perceptual Sexism in Elite Women's Sports
    In Sherri Irvin (ed.), Body Aesthetics, Oxford University Press. pp. 192-221. 2016.
    This essay is about the history of challenges that women in elite sports have faced with respect to their gender identity within a society that perpetuates misleading aesthetic norms of beauty; it is a history fraught with controversy and injustice. . . . We recommend both the acknowledgment within the realm of elite sport of perceptual sexism based on misleading aesthetic norms of beauty, and a way of correcting such erroneous categorization that allows athletes the autonomy and agency to choo…Read more
  •  15
    Perfect Me: Beauty as an Ethical Ideal offers a unique approach to an old topic, that of human beauty, written by an ethicist specializing in global ethics who considers herself "an applied philosopher" (14). It seems to be written primarily for ethicists and not--of preferred interest to this reviewer--for aestheticians, that is, those who routinely write about the value of the complex notion of beauty and its many permutations that involve ethics. . . . Perfect Me: Beauty as an Ethical Ideal i…Read more
  •  102
    Glaring omissions in traditional theories of art
    The Proceedings of the Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy 4 177-186. 1999.
    I investigate the role of feminist theorizing in relation to traditionally-based aesthetics. Feminist artworks have arisen within the context of a patriarchal Artworld dominated for thousands of years by male artists, critics, theorists, and philosophers. I look at the history of that context as it impacts philosophical theorizing by pinpointing the narrow range of the paradigms used in defining “art.” I test the plausibility of Danto’s After the End of Art vision of a post-historical, pluralist…Read more
  •  105
    The Sense of Art (review)
    The Personalist Forum 6 (1): 89-91. 1990.
    Review of 1989 text by Ralph A. Smith, noted art education scholar during the era of DBAE (Discipline Based Art Education), that criticizes the author's agenda to remedy the ills of the state of arts education, arts' secondary status to the sciences, pluralism, and popular ideologies of of contemporary culture as an agenda that is (below the surface) clearly conservative, male-centered, Eurocentric and elitist. My conclusion: "Educators, beware."
  •  81
    Review of Feminism and Contemporary Art: The Revolutionary Power of Women's Laughter and The Emptiness of the Image: Psychoanalysis and Sexual Differences (review)
    with Jo Anna Isaak and Parveen Adams
    Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 56 (3): 299. 1998.
    Both books published in 1996 explore the role that gender plays in the psychology of art (dealing with both making and viewing), complicating current philosophical distinctions between the aesthetic and the cognitive, and providing new insights into basic topics in the history and psychology of perception, representation, and disinterestedness.
  •  123
    Review of Out of Order, Out of Sight (review)
    Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 56 (4): 405-406. 1998.
    There has been an important artist in our midst. Her work is about gender, race, and the internal structures of the artworld, and it predated the current popularity of those topics in theoretical circles by three decades.... Piper's volumes serve two functions. Volume I, Selected writings in Meta-Art, 1968-1992, provides an intimate history of the development of her own creative art making, while Volume 2, Selected writings in Art Criticism, 1967-1992, chronicles her more public responses to art…Read more
  •  72
  •  424
    Lord, Lewis, and the Institutional Theory of Art
    Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 40 (3): 309-314. 1981.
    In "Convention and Dickie's Institutional Theory" (British Journal of Aesthetics 1980), Catherine Lord maintains the following thesis: (L) If a work of art is defined as institutional and conventional, then the definition precludes the freedom and creativity associated with art. Lord also maintains that the antecedent of this conditional is false. In this note, I argue that (i) certain confusions and assumptions prevent Lord from showing the antecedent is false, and (ii) even if the antecedent…Read more
  •  263
    Surface Interpretation: Reply to Leddy
    with Peg Zeglin Brand and Myles Brand
    Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 57 (4): 463-465. 1999.
    In our paper "Surface and Deep Interpretation," we sought to provide detail and texture to Arthur Danto's views on interpretation, thereby explicating and defending them (as published in Mark Rollins, ed., Danto and His Critics (Blackwell, originally published 1993; second edition 2012). Leddy objects to our views; in the end, Danto's view, given our explication of it, remains tenable.
  •  10
    Beauty Matters
    Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 57 (1): 1. 1999.
  •  725
    Feminism and Tradition in Aesthetics (edited book)
    Pennsylvania State University Press. 1995.
    Feminism and Tradition in Aesthetics takes a fresh look at the history of aesthetics and at current debates within the philosophy of art by exploring the ways in which gender informs notions of art and creativity, evaluation and interpretation, and concepts of aesthetic value. Multiple intellectual traditions have formed this field, and the discussions herein range from consideration of eighteenth century legacies of ideas about taste, beauty, and sublimity to debates about the relevance of post…Read more
  •  409
    The Aesthetics of Childbirth
    with Paula Granger
    In Sheila Lintott & Maureen Sander-Staudt (eds.), Philosophical Inquiries into Pregnancy, Childbirth, and Mothering: Maternal Subjects, Routledge. pp. 215-236. 2012.
    Images abound of women throughout the ages engaging in various activities. But why are there so few representations of childbirth in visual art? Feminist artist Judy Chicago once suggested that depictions of women giving birth do not commonly occur in Western culture but can be found in other contexts such as pre-Columbian art or societies previously considered "primitive." Chicago's own exploration of the theme resulted in the creation of The Birth Project (1980-85): an unprecedented series of …Read more
  •  1491
    Beauty Matters (edited book)
    Indiana University Press. 2000.
    Beauty has captured human interest since before Plato, but how, why, and to whom does beauty matter in today's world? Whose standard of beauty motivates African Americans to straighten their hair? What inspires beauty queens to measure up as flawless objects for the male gaze? Why does a French performance artist use cosmetic surgery to remake her face into a composite of the master painters' version of beauty? How does beauty culture perceive the disabled body? Is the constant effort to remain …Read more
  •  521
    Beauty Unlimited (edited book)
    Indiana University Press. 2013.
    Emphasizing the human body in all of its forms, Beauty Unlimited expands the boundaries of what is meant by beauty both geographically and aesthetically. Peg Zeglin Brand and an international group of contributors interrogate the body and the meaning of physical beauty in this multidisciplinary volume. This striking and provocative book explores the history of bodily beautification; the physicality of socially or culturally determined choices of beautification; the interplay of gender, race, cla…Read more
  •  118
    Review of New Feminist Art Criticism by Katy Deepwell (review)
    Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 55 (3): 344-345. 1997.
    Katy Deepwell calls for a vital and visible "new" feminist criticism in 1997 amidst a pessimistic overview of the state of feminist art and criticism in Britain, Canada, and the U.S. As an update to this review, I note that Deepwell took decisive and effective action on her pessimism and for the past twenty years (as of this writing in July 2017) created an online feminist journal--n.paradoxa: international feminist art journal--that has published over 550 articles by 400 writers and artists fro…Read more