Spanish aesthetics finds its first development through the 19th century: aesthetical thought emerged as a university subject and was systematized. Political developments and changes in the legal framework contributed to such expansion, a century after the European development of the discipline. Aestehetics was a subject in vogue all through a long period of our history, reaching a peak and then falling out of favour, partially due to the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War.
Our research project, The Catalan School of Aesthetics and its Influence on Spanish Aesthetics (1800-1936), aims at showing to what extent 19th and early 20th century Catalonia contributed in a decisive way to the introduction of European aesthetical thought in Spain. For example, Jaume Balmes disseminated Kant’s aesthetics (KRV); Milá y Fontanals echoed Hamilton, Schiller, Schlegel and Cousin; Mirabent, de Cassirer, Croce, Santayana, and held a correspondance with V. Basch, Ch. Lalo, and R. Bayer.
Our research project aims at explaining and clarifying the main aesthetical currents in Catalan thought, to show the most relevant works by those who contributed in a higher degree to the expansion of European aesthetics in Spain. We will also study the impact of Catalan aesthetics on university textbooks published in the 19th century and early 20th century, in which we may detect a variety of standpoints from which Aesthetics were disseminated: from metaphysics, from literature, from psychology, from Rethoric.