Imitation; Truthful or Deceptive? The concept of art to Plato and Aristotle

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As literary critics, Plato and Aristotle disagree profoundly about the value of art in human society. Plato attempts to strip artists of the power and prominence they enjoy in his society, while Aristotle tries to develop a method of inquiry to determine the merits of an individual work of art. It is interesting to note that these two disparate notions of art are based upon the same fundamental assumption: that art is a form of …

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…lumps of clay, our worldviews. Art is holding this worldview against the light of life, and testing its similarity to the actual form. The greatest artists, those who were able to most closely envision and sculpt the world, have made their miniature, and passed it along, so other helpless cave-dwellers could gasp or cry or laugh as we held something in our hands which may be the closest thing we will ever have to Truth.