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Becoming 'Enraptured'—Beauty, Form and the Articulation of Feeling: implications for spiritual and moral education

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The recent debate about the inclusion of the arts within the school curriculum has raised important issues about their transformative potential. This article discusses how the arts have a unique contribution to make through their creative articulation of beauty and their capacity to awaken feelings of sympathy. With reference to leading thinkers on aesthetic theory, I demonstrate how the arts can sustain pupils' spiritual and moral lives. In particular, I discuss Hans Urs von Balthasar's theological aesthetic theology with reference to his analysis of what constitutes beauty within the Christian tradition. The redemptive vision such forms highlight is likely to 'enrapture' and be lived by pupils, if teachers discover means of communicating them effectively.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: October 1, 2000

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