New paper: “Monuments as commitments: How art speaks to groups and how groups think in art”

My new paper, Monuments as Commitments: How Art Speaks to Groups and How Groups Think in Art, is forthcoming in Pacific Philosophical Quarterly.

The paper argues:

1. That there are some kinds of art that primarily *address groups*, rather than individuals.

2. That monuments are an example of such. And that they are often made by groups to address *themselves* – to commit themselves to a value. Monuments aren’t just memories, they are collective value commitments.

3. This has consequences for the “tear down the monuments” debate. Because if a monument isn’t just a historical memory, but the live commitment by a community to a value, to guide itself by…

4. That art makes it possible for groups and communities to commit themselves to subtle, emotional values.

5. That art is often a better vessel for collective value than shitty mission statements, explicit “learning outcomes”, and crappy corporate value statements.

6. That, in this way, art makes deeply emotional group agency possible.

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