How Beauty Moves

  • Rafael De Clercq (Lingnan University)


This is an accepted article with a DOI pre-assigned that is not yet published.

For centuries, it has been recognized that beauty can move. My aim in this paper is to understand how beauty moves. One suggestion is that beauty moves in a causal way, for example, by causing us to have certain feelings. Four objections to this suggestion are considered, but none is found convincing in the light of how causation tends to be understood. Moreover, it turns out that there is positive reason for thinking that beauty is causally efficacious, not just once it has been experienced, as John Hyman has suggested, but even in bringing about the experience on which all other effects of beauty depend.

Keywords: Beauty, Causal impotence, Causal efficacy, Naturalism, Instrinsic value, Theories of causation

Accepted on
14 Mar 2024
Peer Reviewed