Categories and Appreciation – A Reply to Sackris
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In his article “Category Independent Aesthetic Experience: The Case of Wine” in this journal, David Sackris presents arguments against Kendall Walton’s view in the famous article “Categories of Art.”1He claims, with support in an argument about the immediate qualities of great wines, that for some kinds of aesthetic appreciation specific category knowledge is not necessary. We welcome the idea that wine appreciation is an aesthetic practice, and more importantly the view that the features of wine appreciation might shed light on, or even transform our understanding of aesthetic experience more generally. The article also draws welcome attention to the role of knowledge in aesthetic experience. We do, however, have some misgivings about some of the arguments Sackris puts forward. Here we are going to focus on two problematic aspects. The first is a problem with the scope of his argument against Walton, and the second relates to an equivocation at the heart of Sackris’s use of the term...