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Sterba, R. (1943). The Aesthetic Sentiment: By Helge Lundholm, Ph.D. Cambridge, Mass.: Sci-Art Publishers, 1941. 223 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 12:432.

(1943). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 12:432

The Aesthetic Sentiment: By Helge Lundholm, Ph.D. Cambridge, Mass.: Sci-Art Publishers, 1941. 223 pp.

Review by:
Richard Sterba

Helge Lundholm approaches his subject almost entirely from the standpoint of the psychology of consciousness. His book is written as a response to Samuel Alexander's Beauty and Other Forms of Value, in which artistic creation and the enjoyment of artistic work are considered as essentially one and the same, or rather in which the latter is regarded as a shadow of the first, whereas Lundholm expresses the opinion that they are fundamentally different. His study is most methodological and careful, but the subject is approached with insufficient means. To the psychoanalyst the book is of little importance; he will be disappointed by the academic method of approach to the problem of the value and the emotional effect of the work of art. Psychoanalysis contributes far more to a comprehension of the effect of artistic creation upon the artist, as well as upon the person enjoying the creation. The emotional discharge through the work of art, its magic effect, the instinctual satisfactions gained through the æsthetic qualities of artistic work, are problems to which analysts have many important clues. With a knowledge of these one feels disappointed by any approach which is made merely from the conscious level.

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