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On John Berg's art criticism ideology - Watch

Author: CaoZuo
Tutor: ChenYue
School: Shaanxi Normal University
Course: Literature and Art
Keywords: John Berger Ways of Seeing Ideology Resist
CLC: J405
Type: Master's thesis
Year: 2013
Downloads: 28
Quote: 0
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Abstract


We are now living in a visual cultural age, in which visual elements, such as film, photography, TV, advertisement, painting, animation, and sculpture, competitively arise, thus form an inevitable visual cultural trend. Seeing become even more important in this visual cultural age. As one of the most active art critics in England today, John Berger focusing on seeing, reveals the ideological connotation which originally hiding in various cultural phenomenon, and point out the content of seeing for us, that is ideology behind art culture. He also takes photography for example to tell us how to see correctly: co-resisting the invasion of capitalism. As we see, there is a basic thought in his theory of seeing:ideology of seeing. Therefore, based on this point, this paper falls into5chapters:The preface gives a brief introduction to the reason for choosing this issue, the situation of the research, and problems to resolve.Chapter1introduces John Berger and his art criticism. There are various Chinese translations of his art critical works, from which we can know his deep thoughts about art criticism. This chapter gives a main introduction to the basic content and theoretical construct of these works, and also indicate the inner link among these works——"seeing".Chapter2points out that the content of John Berger’s seeing is the ideology hiding in various cultural phenomenon. This chapter gives a brief introduction to ideology, and then detailed discusses the seeing ideological connotation revealed in John Berger’s art critical practice. He, just like other art critics, also discusses gender consciousness and ethnicity consciousness behind art culture, but differently, his critical focus returns to class consciousness, which is the most fundamental issue about ideology.Chapter3points that John Berger’theory of seeing point out the content of seeing for us, and then tells us how to see:co-resisting the invasion of capitalism.In his point of view, photography, not only contents ideological connotation, but also becomes the important instrument for the combating between individual and historical, that is the reason why he choose the photography for example. After seriously thinking about photography, he calls for our co-resistance, and raises the issue how to realize individual resistance by photography. Therefore, actually, photography is the way that John Berger indicates for us to resist. All his art criticism is provide for co-resistance, meanwhile, John Berger’s art criticism itself is also the best example of resistance for us. His art critical content, as well as the critical forms in clear and lucid words, is also the resistance to traditional art critical mysterious discourse.In the end is the conclusion of this paper, in this chapter, we make a summary of John Berger’s thought based on raising questions. After gain a relatively clear cognition of John Berger’s thought, we try to raise a question:since John Berger consider photography as a meaning of combating between individual and historical and desire for our corporative resistance, is there a transition from individual resistance to corporative resistance? It is impossible in our point of view. However, John Berger chooses to obviate this problem, which is just the weakest point in his theory. However, as Karl Marx says, all the forms and its product cannot be destroyed by spiritual criticism, nor can they melted in the "self-consciousness" or destroyed as "ghost","shadow","caprice", only by actually overthrow the social relation created by the idealist fallacy can we destroyed them. Therefore, John Berger’s criticism is the first step, and it is necessary to unite us all, to expose the lie of capitalism, in a manner of revolutionary practice.

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