Howard S. Becker

Come ho scritto "I mondi dell'arte"

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The paper concentrates on the work I did to produce the book "Art Worlds", trying to be as detailed and specific as possible so as to provide the readers with practical ways of solving research problems. "Art Worlds" is not a study of this group of artists or that artistic community or some specific form of art practiced in such a context. It is, instead, an empirically based consideration of the kinds of questions you can ask and the kinds of operations you would engage in if you set out to study any such phenomenon. So, you could say, "Art Worlds" is a way of looking at the arts intended to create problems for investigation. The project continues, to this day, as I continue to explore some of those researchable ideas. But it also involves, as the ideas in the book suggest, other people. This is not the story of an heroic thinker working in isolation to create a new vision and bring it to fruition. No such Romantic events are involved. When I wrote "Art Worlds" I found people to think with - all the authors I consulted, some of whom I mention here, and also the people I talked to who were actively engaged in art work and with some of whom I collaborated, as a student or colleague.

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