September 12, 2014
Robert Doran, associate professor of French and comparative literature in the Department of Modern Languages and Cultures, explores how and why the distinction between "beauty" and "the sublime" became important in his forthcoming book The Theory of the Sublime from Longinus to Kant (Cambridge University Press, 2015). "The concept of the sublime allows us to conceive of a certain kind of experience that normally would only be accessible using theological concepts," Doran explained in an interview. "It's a secularized version of religious experience. It's the experience of transcendence, but transcendence in the arts or in the aesthetic appreciation of nature."