ERIC Number: ED147205
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1977
Reference Count: 0
The Social Study of Art--Toward an Interdisciplinary Pursuit.
The paper discusses methodological and theoretical concerns of sociologists and art historians and proposes issues for an interdisciplinary social study of art which draw from both disciplines. The social nature of art is interpreted as including art's contribution to society and social change, its position as an expression of social realities, and its role as a socialization mechanism by which people learn about their world. Four basic processes determine the functions of art in society: the production of works of art, their exposure, their evaluation and selection, and the distribution of rewards to their creators. Review of the literature dealing with theoretical concerns of sociologists of art and art historians indicates that whereas sociologists have traditionally been concerned with the social world in which art is created and disseminated, art historians have generally dealt with formal stylistic characteristics of works of art separately from their social context. In spite of this diversity of theoretical concerns, and the resulting separate and independent methodologies of each discipline, there are major issues of interest to both historians and sociologists of art, including: (1) development of artistic traditions, (2) social response to works of art, and (3) works of art which have survived beyond the time and sociocultural context of their origin. The conclusion is that collaboration between historians and sociologists of art is imperative if research on the social aspects of art is to exhibit both a historical perspective and a social organization perspective. (Author/DB)
Descriptors: Art, Art Appreciation, Art Expression, Comparative Analysis, Cultural Influences, Guidelines, Intellectual Disciplines, Interaction, Interdisciplinary Approach, Literature Reviews, Objectives, Research Methodology, Social History, Social Influences, Sociocultural Patterns, Sociology, Theories
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: California Univ., Santa Cruz.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Revised version of a paper presented at Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association (72nd, Chicago, Illinois, September 5-9, 1977)