Shuyuan Wan


The genesis of Kunstwissenschaft, as an academic idea or a disciplinary concept, is quite different from what the current scholarship has concluded. The founder of Kunstwissenschaft was neither Konrad Fiedler nor Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph von Schelling, but Johann Joachim Winkelmann. The first person who proposed allgemeine Kunstwissenschaft was neither Reinhard Zimmermann nor Max Dessoir but Johann Heinrich Jung-Stilling and it was then improved by Schelling. The academic practice of Kunstwissenschaft was conducted by Winkelmann first, developed by Johann Gottfried Herder, and perfected by Schelling. In short, by the time Schelling delivered his lectures on The Philosophy of Art at Jena University in the early nineteenth century, he had proposed the concept of Kunstwissenschaft, mapped out its academic and disciplinary field, constructed the entire disciplinary system, and demonstrated the mode of research practices. Within less than half a century, Winkelmann, Herder and Schelling not only systematically constructed the theory of allgemeine Kunstwissenschaft and consolidated its disciplinary foundation, but also created three research paradigms: — non-speculative, speculative, and the combination of both. Although Schelling did not propose the concept of Kunstwissenschaft, he was definitely the only academician in the history of Kunstwissenschaft studies who has made outstanding achievements in both theory and practice.


aesthetics, Kunstwissenschaft, philosophy of art

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