Abstract: Francesca Iannelli, “Il profeta, l’eretico, il filosofo post-pop e l’apocalisse mancata. Ovvero Hegel, Belting e Danto sulle sorti dell’arte” (“Von Hegel bis Heute” – Rome, 16-18 December 2013) (III)

From December 16-18, 2013 an Italian-German workshop, “Da Hegel ad oggi. Sviluppi della riflessione estetica tedesca e italiana dopo la morte dell’arte. / Von Hegel bis heute. Entwicklung der deutschen und italienischen Ästhetik nach dem Ende der Kunst,“ was held in Rome (see our previous post – link). Prominent philosophers and young researchers participated in the workshop and delivered talks mainly focused on the end of art and its developments after Hegel.

All contributions will be collected in a volume that will be published in German by Wilhelm Fink Verlag and in Italian by a publisher, yet to be determined.

We are pleased to host the abstracts of some of the conference talks on our website.

We continue the series with the abstract of Professor Francesca Iannelli, “Il profeta, l’eretico, il filosofo post-pop e l’apocalisse mancata. Ovvero Hegel, Belting e Danto sulle sorti dell’arte”.

Previous entries:

I – Erzsébet Rózsa, “Vom Ideal der Schönheit zum Prinzip der Freiheit. Einige systematische Überlegungen Hegels über das Ende der  Kunst als ihren „neuen Anfang“”

2 – Suzanne Dürr, “Philosophie als das Ende der Kunst? Das Verhältnis von Kunst und Philosophie bei Hegel und Danto”


Francesca Iannelli

The prophet, the heretic, the post-pop philosopher, and the missed apocalypse


Hegel, Belting and Danto about art and its lot



Both Arthur C. Danto and Hans Belting have strongly reinterpreted Hegel’s aesthetics theory and shifted the focus of their attention from a philosophical interpretation of art as reduplication (Verdopplung) of a community to a critical inspection of the history of art of the 20th century, in which they saw significant signs of the prediction of the “end”. Both philosophers have announced the end of the traditional history of art, and have inflamed the discussion among experts themselves as well as with non-experts. Now, contrary to many other interpretations of Hegel as a prophet, I will endeavour to show that the Hegelian thought doesn’t aim to predict or to envisage the future of the human culture. In his Lectures on Aesthetics he reflected on a dissolution (Auflösung) that was still happening in modernity, in which the loss of sacredness and seriousness of the artistic language was evident. This dissolution could be considered just a metaphorical death, where the shadow of sentience hangs over artwork like a death sentence. Apart from this metaphorical explanation, Hegel never reflected on a possible historical death of art in the present or in the distant future. Instead, he considers the identity of art to be a conflictual one, ever stretched between spiritual and sentient, unable to offer an abstract interpretation of the world, particularly in modernity. However, art remains a vehicle for humanity’s comprehension of its own essence, but it is neither the only one nor the highest one. The merit of Danto’s and Belting’s investigation is nevertheless great and shows some risks of an over-confident ascending narrative thought in an epoch like ours that has survived the deconstruction of the postmodern.

Francesca Iannelli ( is researcher in Aesthetics at the University Roma Tre. She has studied Philosophy in Rom and Bochum, and between 1997 and 2001 was scientific fellow worker at the Department of Philosophy of the FernUniversität Hagen. She received her PhD in Philosophy (2004) from the FernUniversität Hagen and the University of Roma Tre. The PhD thesis on the importance of the ugliness in Hegel’s Aesthetics has received the Lucio Colletti Award of the House of Representatives, Rome, Italy. Her primary research interests include classical German Philosophy and History of Aesthetics. She is the author of: 1) Oltre Antigone – Figure della soggettività nella Fenomenologia dello spirito di G. W. F. Hegel, Carocci, 2006, 2) Das Siegel der Moderne – Hegels Bestimmung des Hässlichen in der Vorlesungen zur Ästhetik und die Rezeption bei den Hegelianern, W. Fink, 2007, and 3) Dissonanze Contemporanee- Arte e vita in un tempo inconciliato, Quodlibet, 2010.

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