Aesthetic Scale and Pre-1500 Modernisms
The chapter argues that modernism is not a single style, movement or period; instead, modernism is best understood as the aesthetic dimension of any given modernity, interacting with other society domains such as politics, economics, military, culture, etc. It tests the usefulness of this approach to modernism with a reading of three pre-1500 modernisms: Tang Dynasty poet Du Fu in the context of the An Lushan Rebellion; north Indian poet-singer Kabir (15th century) in the context of Tammerlane’s conquest and mass conversion campaign; and the story of the innovative cobalt blue and luster glazes of Basra potters during the Abbasid Caliphate.
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