Beauty Will Save the World? Ideology as Aesthetics

Beauty Will Save the World? Ideology as Aesthetics

Musikhin G.I.,

Dr. Sci. (Pol. Sci.), Professor, Department of Political Science, National Research University Higher School of Economics,

For citation:

Musikhin G.I. Beauty Will Save the World? Ideology as Aesthetics . – Polis. Political Studies. 2008. No. 4. P. 112. (In Russ.)


An attempt has bee undertaken in the article to apply Kant’s cognitive pattern of aesthetic theory for analyzing particularities of political ideology. Connecting the discursive approach to ideology proposed by Althusser, and Kant’s theory of aesthetics as critique of the judgment ability (Kritik der Urtheilskraft), one formalizes in a new way the concept of ideology in categories of «the beautiful - the ugly» and of «the lofty - the profane» and overcomes the stable stereotype of ideology as «false consciousness». What appears especially important in this connection is not so much how this or that ideology describes the world, as how it «locates» in this world the socio-political agents. Therefore ideology presents itself as a «wandering» intermediary between concrete reality and the individuals, it forms a peculiar unattainable visible horizon of the political world. The characterized approach allows to conclude that people’s cynicism toward political authority is not an indicator of the «end of ideology» as a descriptive political category, for it is exactly this cynicism that is being influenced over by the ideological factors forming the «obedient majority» of modern societies.

Content No. 4, 2008

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