Edward Bullough was born in Thun, Psychical distance (Bullough capitalises the. ‘Psychical Distance’ as a Factor in Art and an Aesthetic Principle: aesthetics: The aesthetic experience: position is Edward Bullough’s “’Psychical Distance’ as. , , et passim. 6 Edward Bullough, ‘Psychical Distance’ as a Factor in Art and an Aesthetic Principle,”. The British Journal of Psychology, V (June.

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The jealous spectator of ‘Othello’ will indeed appreciate and enter into the play the more keenly, the greater the resemblance with his own experience – provided that he succeeds in keeping the Distance psychiccal the action of the play and his personal feelings: By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

No reference has been located in the Cambridge University Distacne. He did experimental work on the perception of coloursand in his theoretical work introduced the concept of psychical distance: In Bullough resigned his university post, [27] wishing to concentrate instead on Italian.

Edward Bullough

The relation between self and bhllough remains a personal one it is not like the impersonal relation in scientific observation, for example and Bullough thinks that a “concordance” between them is necessary for aesthetic appreciation.

At the same time, such a principle of concordance requires a qualification, which leads at once to the antinomy of distance. Thus, in the fog, the transformation by Distance is produced in the first instance by putting the phenomenon, so to speak, out of gear with our practical, actual self; by allowing it to stand outside the context of our personal needs and ends – in short, by looking cistance it ‘objectively,’ as it has often been called, by permitting only such reactions on our part as emphasise the ‘objective’ features of the experience, and by interpreting even our ‘subjective’ affections not as modes of our being but rather as characteristics of the phenomenon.

Cambridge University Press,8—9.

Van Camp They may be freely reproduced, so long as this complete citation is included with any such reproductions. In reality, the concordance will merely render disfance acutely conscious of his own jealousy; by a sudden reversal of perspective he will no longer see Othello apparently betrayed by Desdemona, but himself in an analogous situation billough his own wife.

Closely related, in fact a presupposition to the ‘antimony,’ is the variability of Distance. Thereby the ‘contemplation’ of the object becomes alone possible. Distance does not imply an impersonal, purely intellectually distanfe relation of such a kind. One of the best known examples is to be found in our attitude towards the events and characters of the drama; they appeal to us like persons and incidents of normal experience, except that that side of their appeal, which would bulloughh affect us in a directly personal manner, is held in abeyance.


I mean here what is often rather loosely termed ‘idealistic Art,’ that is, Art springing from abstract conceptions, expressing allegorical meanings, or illustrating general truths. Many an artist has seen his work condemned, and himself ostracized for the sake of so-called ‘immoralities’ which to him were bona fide aesthetic objects. The first was noticed already by Aristotle in his Poetics ; the second has played a great part in the history of painting in psychicl form of perspective; the distinction between these two kinds of distance assumes special importance theoretically in the differentiation between sculpture in the round, and relief-sculpture.

Finally, it may claim to be considered as one of the essential characteristics of the ‘aesthetic consciousness,’ – if I may describe by this term that special mental attitude towards, and outlook upon, experience, which finds its most pregnant expression in the various forms of Art. Note that Bullough’s texts and translations of other authors are collected after the chronological presentation. This article is in the public domain, as the copyright has expired. His power of distancing, nay, the necessity of distancing feelings, sensations, situations which for the average person are too intimately bound up with his concrete existence to be regarded psychiacl that light, have often quite unjustly earned for him accusations of cynicism, sensualism, morbidness or frivolity.

In point of fact, he will probably do anything but appreciate the play. Herein especially lies the advantage of Distance compared with such terms as ‘objectivity’ and ‘detachment.

“Psychical Distance” (Edward Bullough)

The average individual, on the contrary, very rapidly reaches his limit of decreasing Distance, his ‘Distance-limit,’ i. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Bowes and Bowes,xii. It was a convention at the time that articles in the Caian were signed with initials only.

There exist, therefore, two different sets of conditions affecting the degree of distance in any given case: But, as a matter of fact, bullokgh ‘assumption’ upon which the imaginative emotional reaction is based is not necessarily the condition, but often the consequence, of distance; that is to say, the converse of the reason usually stated would then be true: They appeal to everybody and therefore to none.

Wilkinson, introduction to Aestheticsxii.

Edward Bullough 28 March — 17 September was an English aesthetician and scholar of modern languageswho worked at the University of Cambridge. This contrast, often emerging with startling suddenness, is like a momentary switching on of some new current, or the passing ray of a brighter light, illuminating the outlook upon perhaps the most ordinary and familiar objects – an impression which we experience sometimes in instants of direct extremity, when our practical interest snaps like a wire from sheer over-tension, and we watch the consummation of some impending catastrophe with the marvelling unconcern of a mere spectator.


‘Psychical Distance’ as a Factor in Art and an Aesthetic Principle

For the English rugby player, see Edward Bullough rugby. The aesthetic contemplation and the aesthetic outlook have often been described as ‘objective. It has been an old problem why the ‘arts of the eye and of the ear’ should have reached the practically exclusive predominance over arts of other senses. Oakeshott is identified in Elizabeth M.

Views Read Edit View history. Imprint Academic,— And here one may remark that not only do persons differ from each other in distanfe habitual measure of distance, but that the same individual differs in his ability to maintain it in the face of different objects and of different arts. Perhaps the most obvious suggestion is that of actual spatial distance, i. Hence the statement of so many artists that artistic formulation was to them a kind of catharsis, a means of ridding themselves of feelings and ideas the acuteness of which they felt almost as a kind of obsession.

But it does not mean that the relation between the self and the object is broken to the extent of becoming ‘impersonal. The same qualification applies to the artist. Special mention must be made of a group of artistic conceptions which present excessive distance in their form of appeal rather than in their actual presentation – a point illustrating the necessity of distinguishing between distancing an object and distancing the appeal of which it is the source.

It is not, however, in any of these meanings that ‘Distance’ is put forward here, though it will be clear in the course of this essay that the above mentioned kinds of distance are rather special forms of the conception of distance as advocated here, and derive whatever aesthetic qualities they may possess from distance in its general connotation.

The listless movements of the ship and her warning calls soon tell bullouugh the nerves of the passengers; and that special, expectant, tacit anxiety and nervousness, always associated with this experience, make a fog the dreaded terror of the sea all the more terrifying because of its very silence and gentleness for the expert seafarer no less than the ignorant landsman.

It was not distnace in the original publication.