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Practical Pursuits: Religion, Politics, and Personal Cultivation in Nineteenth-Century Japan (review)

Practical Pursuits: Religion, Politics, and Personal Cultivation in Nineteenth-Century Japan... of the ban on images (like that of iconoclasm in general, as the polar opposite of idolatry) thus acquires a new problematic dimension calling for a broader cultural, historical, political-historical, and art-historical interpretation that would not derive this ban exclusively from dogmatic religious prohibitions. Finally, within the ambit of Islamic art itself (the uniformity and monosemy of which is challenged, and which is not homogeneous either experientially/practically or conceptually/theoretically), Leaman finds both examples and counter-examples that--given the problem of the ban on figural representation--the Persian practice of Islamic art represents. These examples, taken from an almost boundless field, could be a corrective to one-sided and strongly essentialist concepts of interpretation ´s of Islamic art. The cliche of Islamic art as ``formalist,'' ``abstract,'' ``the dissolution of matter,'' ``spiritual,'' ``religious,'' ``unrealistic,'' ``ascetic,'' and so on, fall away in the face of the artistic practices of Islamic art that celebrate not only its ``metaphysical obligations'' but also the vivid, sensory, earthly, vibrant, diverse plenitude and beauty of life. Poetry, literature, the art of the miniature and of illumination, the art of music, the shaping of the living space, styles of dress and ways of life in the home, the culture of http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Philosophy East and West University of Hawai'I Press

Practical Pursuits: Religion, Politics, and Personal Cultivation in Nineteenth-Century Japan (review)

Philosophy East and West , Volume 56 (3) – Jul 20, 2006

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2006 University of Hawai'i Press.
ISSN
1529-1898
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Abstract

of the ban on images (like that of iconoclasm in general, as the polar opposite of idolatry) thus acquires a new problematic dimension calling for a broader cultural, historical, political-historical, and art-historical interpretation that would not derive this ban exclusively from dogmatic religious prohibitions. Finally, within the ambit of Islamic art itself (the uniformity and monosemy of which is challenged, and which is not homogeneous either experientially/practically or conceptually/theoretically), Leaman finds both examples and counter-examples that--given the problem of the ban on figural representation--the Persian practice of Islamic art represents. These examples, taken from an almost boundless field, could be a corrective to one-sided and strongly essentialist concepts of interpretation ´s of Islamic art. The cliche of Islamic art as ``formalist,'' ``abstract,'' ``the dissolution of matter,'' ``spiritual,'' ``religious,'' ``unrealistic,'' ``ascetic,'' and so on, fall away in the face of the artistic practices of Islamic art that celebrate not only its ``metaphysical obligations'' but also the vivid, sensory, earthly, vibrant, diverse plenitude and beauty of life. Poetry, literature, the art of the miniature and of illumination, the art of music, the shaping of the living space, styles of dress and ways of life in the home, the culture of

Journal

Philosophy East and WestUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Jul 20, 2006

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