chapter  2
24 Pages

Before Mediation: Social Readings of Art

Sociology looked down on generalisations born of a direct reading of the work. Bastide gives an excellent overview of the choices which imposed themselves from the start on those who attempted to give a sociological interpretation of art. 'The sociology of art is only meaningful if it allows enriching the fundamental data from which the history and culture of the modern world arise'. Paradoxically, the vision of art as the mediation of the fundamental sacred values of a society drew them surreptitiously but definitively away from Francastel's cultural and sociological reading. There is an author who claims to be Marxist yet overcomes the opposition between the ideological interpretation of art and the analysis of the system of its production: T. W. Adorno. In theory, Adorno wishes for an objective aesthetics. Adorno allows himself to take one single liberty: to open out the scores of Mahler's symphonies.