In The Sublime in Modern Philosophy: Aesthetics, Ethics, and Nature, Emily Brady takes a fresh look at the sublime and shows why it endures as a meaningful concept in contemporary philosophy. In a reassessment of historical approaches, the first part of the book identifies the scope and value of the sublime in eighteenth-century philosophy (with a focus on Kant), nineteenth-century philosophy and Romanticism, and early wilderness aesthetics. The second part examines the sublime's contemporary significance through its relationship to the arts; its position with respect to other aesthetic categories involving mixed or negative emotions, such as tragedy; and its place in environmental aesthetics and ethics. Far from being an outmoded concept, Brady argues that the sublime is a distinctive aesthetic category which reveals an important, if sometimes challenging, aesthetic-moral relationship with the natural world.
Emily Brady is Reader in Aesthetics at the Institute of Geography and Environment, and an Academic Associate in Philosophy at the University of Edinburgh. Her research interests include environmental aesthetics (nature, art, cultural landscapes and everyday life), environmental ethics, Kant and eighteenth-century philosophy. Brady is author of Aesthetics of the Natural Environment (2003) and co-editor of Aesthetic Concepts: Essays after Sibley (2001), Humans in the Land: The Ethics and Aesthetics of the Cultural Landscape (2008) and Human-Environment Relations: Transformative Values in Theory and Practice (with Pauline Phemister, 2012). Brady has been a Laurance S. Rockefeller Faculty Fellow at Princeton University's Center for Human Values and is a past president of the International Society for Environmental Ethics. She has been an associate editor of Environmental Values and a co-editor of Society and Space and has also served as secretary, treasurer and executive committee member of the British Society of Aesthetics.
Part I. The Historical Sublime: 1. The eighteenth-century sublime; 2. The Kantian sublime I: pre-critical and critical work; 3. The Kantian sublime II: nature and morality; 4. The Romantic sublime; Part II. The Contemporary Sublime: 5. Art and the sublime; 6. Tragedy and the sublime; 7. The sublime, terrible beauty, and ugliness; 8. The environmental sublime.