By C. Stephen Jaeger
What is the strength in artwork, C. Stephen Jaeger asks, which can input our attention, encourage admiration or imitation, and hold a reader or viewer from the realm because it is to an international extra chic? we've lengthy famous the ability of people to steer or enchant through the strength of private charisma—and certainly, in his award-winning Envy of Angels, Jaeger himself brilliantly parsed the facility of charismatic lecturers to form the area of medieval studying. In Enchantment, he turns his cognizance to a sweeping and multifaceted exploration of the air of mystery now not of people yet of art.
For Jaeger, the aura of the visible arts, literature, and movie services through developing an exalted semblance of lifestyles, a realm of attractiveness, elegant feelings, heroic causes and deeds, godlike our bodies and activities, and superhuman talents, which will dazzle the humbled spectator and raise her or him up into where so represented. Charismatic artwork makes us are looking to reside within the larger international that it depicts, to act like its heroes and heroines, and to imagine and act in response to their values. It briefly weakens person will and rational serious suggestion. It brings us right into a country of enchantment.
Ranging greatly throughout classes and genres, Enchantment investigates the charismatic impact of an historical statue of Apollo at the poet Rilke, of the painter Dürer's self-portrayal as a determine of Christ-like beauty, of a numinous Odysseus washed ashore on Phaeacia, and of the black-and-white projection of Fred Astaire dancing around the Depression-era motion picture monitor. From the tattoos at the face of a Maori tribesman to the haunting visage of Charlotte Rampling in a movie through Woody Allen, Jaeger's remarkable e-book explores the dichotomies of fact and phantasm, lifestyles and paintings which are primary to either cultic and aesthetic experience.