Art, in all its diverse manifestations, from storytelling to picture-making, from singing and dancing to poetry, is as distinctive and universal an activity of the human mind as language. It is, in essence, a way of thinking about the world, of shaping experience as it is felt to be and reshaping it as it could be, that long predates the development of rational reflection. Stories have been told for thousands of years, perhaps tens of thousands; philosophical and scientific thought begins, for practical purposes, around 2500 years ago.
The role of art in our lives
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By this contributor
- Christopher Allen reviews 'Heaven on Earth: Painting and the life to come' by T.J. Clark
- Christopher Allen reviews 'Keeping Their Marbles: How the treasures of the past ended up in museums ... and why they should stay there' by Tiffany Jenkins
- Christopher Allen reviews 'Palmyra: An irreplaceable treasure' by Paul Veyne, translated by Teresa Lavender Fagan
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