The speaking image: visual communication and the nature of depiction

In Matthew Kieran (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Aesthetics and the Philosophy of Art. Blackwell. pp. 135--159 (2006)
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This paper summarises the main claims I have made in a series of publications on depiction. Having described six features of depiction that any account should explain, I sketch an account that does this. The account understands depiction in terms of the experience to which it gives rise, and construes that experience as one of resemblance. The property in respect of which resemblance is experienced was identified by Thomas Reid, in his account of ‘visible figure’. I defend the account against certain criticisms, and compare it to some of its main rivals, in particular the views offered by Goodman, Wollheim and Dominic Lopes.

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Robert Hopkins
New York University


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