Disability Aesthetics

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This title explores the rich but hidden role that disability plays in modern art and in aesthetic judgments. ""Disability Aesthetics"" is the first attempt to theorize the representation of disability in modern art and visual culture. Tobin Siebers conceives of the disabled body and mind as playing crucial roles in the evolution of modern aesthetics, revealing disability as a unique resource that was discovered by modern art and then embraced by it as a defining concept. Combining the insights of disability studies and art history, chapters are devoted to artworks that represent disability and artworks by disabled artists; the emphasis on disability in the American culture wars; the use of aesthetic appearance to disqualify human beings as inferior to others; the connection between artworks damaged by vandalism and the representation of injury as a subject of art; the fascination with violence, injury, and disability in the global media; and, the image assumed by disability in both literary and visual studies. Richly illustrated and accessibly written, ""Disability Aesthetics"" challenges readers to embrace a conception of art in which disability represents an aesthetic value in itself.

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The University of Michigan Press
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