Weibang Liu


Aesthetics, as a science of perception, starts from the embodied “sense” and ends up becoming a theoretical “science.” It focuses on the ways in which sense becomes a theorist in practice. Reconstructing aesthetics via the dimension of body is neither a simple negation of practical aesthetics nor a mechanical repetition of contemporary Western aesthetic discourse, but a coordinating framework of “history-body-field” with the perceptual practice of body at its core. Such process allows aesthetics to be restored as “body-semiotics.” The body is not only the perceptual base of narrating, historicizing and rationalizing the embodied practice, but also the material support for the spatialization, presentation and sensationalization of history. Symbolization is the key to integrating “body” and “history,” “embodied sensibility” and “practical rationality.” It is in the interaction of body, symbol and history that human beings establish a dualistic world view that ties the ancient to the modern times. This dualistic world view would then evaluate human beings themselves, resulting in the devaluation of existence. Aesthetics serves to preserve the value of existence, that is, the ultimate “theorist” is the highest affirmation of individual existence in practice.


somaesthetics; practice; history-body-field; body-semiotics

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