The structure and inherent values of the Feldman (1981) method of art criticism are debated in some art education circles. On one hand it is argued that the Feldman method, because of its emphasis on formal analysis, lends itself more readily to analytical formalist criticism, and is thus not an adequate instrument for socially concerned art educators. The other side of the debate has it that the method is appropriate for socially contextual interpretation when applied by socially concerned art educators. My thesis is that Feldman's method is well suited for socially contextual criticism of aesthetic forms. I intend to develop this thesis through examining the structure of the method, the context from which it has arisen including the general historical context, the propensities of Feldman's writings not directly related to art criticism, the ways in which Feldman has used the method, and finally through explication of my own socially-centered use of it .


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