Can Anyone Learn How to Appreciate Art?
He assumes if he can’t understand what she writes, then the "proverbial common folk" certainly can’t. He misses that he is just the sort of hip cog Paglia writes about, not to.
In addition to the scare quotes and the intellectual name dropping, he launches highbrow broadsides at the geographic scope,
"Why “Glittering Images” would confine itself almost exclusively to Europe and North America is as inexplicable as it is inexcusable," and at her inclusion of Star Wars, which "ponders the mystery of our existence at the level of a toddler."
He is so wedded to the notion of esoteric art that he can't see Paglia's strategy. She chose more recent but lesser known Western works to pique readers' interest with something almost familiar. And while I don't think she conveniently imagined Revenge of the Sith's visual artistry, she crowned George Lucas deliberately. I doubt Glittering Images: A Journey Through Art from Egypt to Blue Dawn would have generated as much curiosity. She knows that to influence culture, one must engage it.
Paglia wrote her book to rescue art from the ideal of the unattainable. It isn’t as intimidating as science. We need not slog through Russell on relativity to understand it. We simply need to learn a little history and a bit about the artist’s technique to see what the artist has rendered.
Previously from Leslie Loftis at PJ Lifestyle: