Aesthetics (2020/2021)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Markus Georg Ophaelders
Markus Georg Ophaelders
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Other available courses
Academic sector
Language of instruction
CuCi IIB dal Apr 14, 2021 al May 29, 2021.

Lesson timetable

Go to lesson schedule

Learning outcomes

The course aims to provide the conceptual, methodological and cultural foundations for analyzing and interpreting aesthetic problems in the strict sense (sensitive perception and knowledge) and works of art in a broader sense. In this sense, specific knowledge is transmitted (interpretative theories and artistic practices in the history of the western aesthetic tradition) which are subsequently applied to specific problems (of perception in general and to particular works). The teaching aims to understand the conceptual logics and structures through which the aesthetic experience makes us understand and transform the world in which we live. At the end of the course, the student will have developed the ability to understand the texts dedicated to aesthetics, a correct hermeneutic approach to them, and to use a precise and adequate language; moreover it is aimed at allowing the student to acquire the skills to confront himself or herself with a sensitive perception and with the artistic world so as to be able to form a critical judgment independently. Finally, students will develop the ability to communicate aesthetic topics with specialists and non-specialists and to continue further in their studies.


Play Beauty Revolution
Arts and Politics in Friedrich Schiller's Aesthetics


1. The first part of the course deals with different relationships between arts and philosophical knowledge (mimesis and ratio) focalizing on some of the fundamental concepts and methodologies (Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, Rationalism, Empiricism, Baumgarten, Kant).
2. This will be followed by an analytical lecture of some of Friedrich Schiller's writings in order to discuss the principal concepts of his aesthetics, such as for example the sublime, naive and sentimental poetry, beauty, the aesthetic state and the impulse to play. A particular accent will be laid on Schiller's political and aesthetic project in the Letters on the aesthetic education of mankind.
3. The course will finish with a brief examination of the principal conceptions of post-Kantian aesthetics, such as the ones of Hegel and of some of the romantic figures like Hölderlin, Novalis and Schlegel, also trying to reflect on the links between arts and politics.
4. In conclusion, the analysis of Picasso's Guernica will help to discuss the aesthetic and philosophical concepts, methods and the knowledge elaborated formerly.


- Markus Ophälders, Filosofia arte estetica, Mimesis, Milano 2008.

- Friedrich Schiller, Del sublime, Abscondita 2010 o successive edizioni.

- Friedrich Schiller, Sulla poesia ingenua e sentimentale, Abscondita, Milano 2014.

- Friedrich Schiller, L'educazione estetica dell'uomo, Bompiani, Milano 2011.

- Markus Ophälders, Max Raphael legge Guernica di Picasso, in: Id., Labirinti, Mimesis, Milano 2008, pp. 23-43.


The didactic methods adopted are not distinct between attending and non-attending students. They consist of frontal lessons devoted to the transmission of fundamental concepts and structures of thinking and reflection and their respective application tools to implement theoretical notions in the direction of autonomous critical judgment.
Throughout the academic year, the teacher also holds a regular individual Reception at the times indicated on his page (without having to set a specific appointment). However, it is recommended that you consult the messages to be informed of any changes. During the first lesson, attending students will receive the full lesson schedule with the dates and topics discussed. Information on timetables and classrooms is also provided.
The content of books and lessons is adhering to the program.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
Friedrich Schiller Del sublime Abscondita 2010
Markus Ophaelders Filosofia arte estetica Mimesis 2008 9788884837585
Markus Ophälders Labirinti Mimesis 2008 pp. 23-43.
Friedrich Schiller L'educazione estetica dell'uomo Bompiani 2011
Friedrich Schiller Sulla poesia ingenua e sentimentale Abscondita 2014

Assessment methods and criteria

The assessment of the learning outcomes will be defined within the 15th of September 2020.