Monday, January 19, 2009

Pleasure and Art

I would call the movie Mamma Mia! "objectively awful." I think that if you don't love ABBA, love musicals, or (possibly) like romantic comedies, then there is precisely zero chance you won't hate this movie.

But here's the thing: there are people who love ABBA, there are people who love musicals, and there are people that (possibly) like romantic comedies. So you might enjoy this movie.

I continue to assert reading as an individual activity--finding aesthetic pleasure is an intensely individual, personal, subjective experience. We can discuss objective merits of a work of literature, and certainly it is not in our individual control what books make it into our hands. But whether and to what extent we receive pleasure from a book will be dependent on subjective factors. And what we read, how we read, what sorts of things we focus on when we read, what we look for when we read, what elements of a work we enjoy, what features of writing we devote our attention to, is individual.


  1. J'Rod11:41 PM

    I did not enjoy Mamma Mia! I think I told you this already, but I thought that it was a half hour too long. I dealt and was fine with it for a long time, but by the end I was fed up.

    I'm guessing that you don't love ABBA or romantic comedies, so did you enjoy Mamma Mia! as a fan of musicals?

  2. Though I liked a few of the song and dance numbers, no, I didn't enjoy the movie.