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Schritte International 2 Answers







the question “How can we do the right thing?” by answering the question “What is the right thing to do?” and adds to the cognitive understanding of that question by drawing from Heidegger’s phenomenology of world and being. The question of being raises the important questions of right and wrong, which set the frame of reference for the artwork. However, it is the answer to the question of what is the right thing to do which brings about the transformation of history, and therefore of the artwork. To achieve that, Sextus must show that artworks are at the root of moral goodness and thereby of the truth of being. As the book title indicates, Sextus shows that artworks are the exemplars of moral goodness, in order to show that the transition from the Greek and Roman philosophical tradition to Christianity is one of returning to that tradition and to the study of art. The book uses Sextus Empiricus’s On the Opinion of the Ancients, which, as the subtitle states, deals with the works of Protagoras, Democritus and others. In doing so, it shows how art is at the root of moral goodness and that the transition from the Greek and Roman philosophical tradition to Christianity is one of returning to that tradition and to the study of art. The work opens with the question of what is the right thing to do. The first thing to note is that for Sextus, art can offer the answer to this question, in particular the art of dance. He first addresses the question of what the right thing is to do in this context by showing how, by being beautiful, it is right to spend time enjoying the art of dance (chapter 1). However, Sextus also wants to show that the right thing to do is to do what the ancients did – follow the authority of their elders and the philosophers. That way, Sextus argues, the Greek and Roman tradition will remain the foundation of the way of life in the world (chapter 2). In this chapter Sextus questions the moral status of all of art, and begins to set the stage for the whole book. He shows that art is not morally neutral by showing how art affects us and by showing that art affects the quality of life. Art is not morally neutral First, Sextus argues that art is not morally neutral because what art is about is the goodness of life. “Wherefore, then, if good life


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