[Academic Dialogue]Cross-Cultural Dialogue on Environmental Aesthetics: Exchange and Consensus - A High-Level Dialogue on Cross-Cultural Environmental Aesthetics

Arnold Berlint, American leading scholar on environmental aesthetics, former president of the American Society for Aesthetics, and tenure professor at Long Island University, and Professor Chen Wangheng, a pioneer in Chinese environmental aesthetics from the School of Philosophy of Wuhan University, engaged in an academic dialogue on five frontier issues of cross-cultural environmental aesthetics during the summer of 2023 in Professor Berlint's study in Maine, USA. Alumni of the School of Philosophy, Zhong Zhen, served as the host and interpreter for the discussion. Recently, the full text of this unique academic dialogue was compiled and published in the first issue of the Jianghai Academic Journal in 2024.

The main points of the dialogue are as follows: Regarding the environment, both scholars acknowledge the interdependence between the environment and humanity. Berlint emphasizes the holistic concept of the environment, and Chen Wangheng, while endorsing holism, also emphasizes the significant role of human practice in the generation of the environment. Regarding participation, Berlint defines the totality and continuity of aesthetic activities with "participation," while Chen Wangheng interprets aesthetic participation in the context of Chinese culture with "residence." Regarding the cultural attributes of the environment, Berlint emphasizes the influence of cultural differences on aesthetic perception, while Chen Wangheng believes that consensus on the cultural nature of the environment implies the possibility of commonality. Regarding the relationship between ecology and the environment, Berlint believes that ecology is a scientific perspective for viewing the environment and lacks aesthetic significance, while Chen Wangheng constructs an ecological civilization aesthetics based on this reflection. Regarding the aesthetic community, Berlint points out the uniqueness of the aesthetic community in restoring the original unity of the world in aesthetic experience, while Chen Wangheng regards the sense of home as the aesthetic essence of environmental aesthetics, thereby extending to the idea of the environment as a common homeland for humanity.

Through this dialogue, the two professors clarified the basic issues of environmental aesthetics in a theoretical sense, promoted the ideological leap of environmental aesthetics theory development, and opened up a new stage of core orientation for environmental aesthetics research. The direct collision of Chinese and Western environmental aesthetic thoughts in this cross-cultural dialogue will have a positive and extensive impact on the subsequent development of environmental aesthetics discipline.

Full text link: https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/jR2MKkY7CalrH9crtzPC2g

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