What Is Beauty? A Philosophical Study of Beauty

Beauty is typically defined as a subjective aspect of objects which makes these objects appealing to see. These objects may be natural, human made or purely artistic in form. Beauty, with art and aesthetics, is perhaps the most important theme of aesthetics, among the various branches of philosophy. In fact, aesthetics is often considered to be a subset of art and aesthetics is often used as a source to distinguish between different artistic styles.


Modern aesthetics is a philosophical study of how beauty relates to the culture of the modern era. It also examines how beauty relates to individualism, liberalism, rationalism, realism and neo-classicalism. It also examines how beauty relates to technology and how it varies with the technological advances made over time. The discipline of modern aesthetics was further broadened by the French philosophers criticizing aesthetic value, such as Nietzsche and the postmodernists. Postmodernists argue that beauty culture have no inherent meaning and their definition is highly relative to culture.

Aesthetic philosophy seeks to answer the question, ‘what is beauty?’ Modern aesthetics is an empirical approach to answering this question through a philosophical study of the aesthetic experience. This understanding of beauty as a subjective and personal experience provides new insights into the aesthetic domain, bringing into question the assumptions and values underlying the scientific study of aesthetic experiences.