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Why we do not perceive aesthetic properties

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Abstract

This chapter examines whether there are genuine cases of aesthetic perception, and hence whether aesthetic judgements depend on the perception of aesthetic properties. My response will be negative. Specifically, I will argue that although our access to aesthetic ‘properties’ does appear to resemble perception in certain respects, it differs in two key ways from cases of ordinary everyday perception: (a) in its opacity (i.e. its lacking transparency) and (b) in its partly nonattributive phenomenology.