Jan Patocka: On Art and Philosophy

JVF Conference Papers

The editor who attempts to select a group of texts that should create a meaningful whole, is confronted with the situation determined by the integral character of the work. Here, one cannot speak of a philosophy of art independent of the rest of Patocka’s work (not to mention the many fragments of manuscripts or unpublished essays). If one were to remove from their context those studies which treat the subject of art or particular art works in one way or another, the final selection would be so reductive as to raise the question of why Patocka placed so much emphasis in these essays on the position and character of art. The collection would have at best an incidental value. It is therefore obvious that should the editor want to fulfil his task at least in part, he must justify his standpoint and clarify the criteria according to which he has assembled the volume with respect to Patocka’s work as a whole...

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