The Abolition of Man

Topics: Art, Subject, Object Pages: 1 (327 words) Published: August 29, 2006
The Abolition of Man
Do inanimate objects have objective goodness or badness? How about works of art? In The Abolition of Man, C.S. Lewis touches on the subject of inanimate objects, whether if they can have objective goodness or badness. C.S. Lewis uses a quote from the writers Gaius and Titius' famous book, Coleridge at the Waterfall, to show how an inanimate object can bring forth goodness (2). Gaius and Titius' book states "When a man said This is sublime, he appeared to be making a remark about the waterfall…Actually…he was not making a remark about the waterfall, but a remark about his own feelings" (2). It is not the actual object itself that has objective goodness or badness, but the combination of a person's emotions and feelings with the inanimate object which makes it appear to have goodness or badness. Gaius and Titius' book goes saying "We appear to be saying something very important about something: and actually we are only saying something about our own feelings" (3). An inanimate object can either seem to be good or bad depending on the feelings being expressed at the time. Whatever feelings a person has, it will reflect on the inanimate object that they see. Art may also bring both goodness and badness depending on the person looking at it. An artist would never create a work of art if they thought it would look ugly. People who see the artist's painting may not see it to be as appealing as the artist sees it. The painting may be beautiful to one person's eyes and ugly to another, it all depends on both the people's feelings and what type of things they like. All Inanimate objects, including art do not have objective goodness or badness by themselves. It is a person's feelings combined with the inanimate object which influences their decision whether the object have goodness or badness.
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