Text topic: An Ethical Reading of Art
Text author: Никола Танасић
The author examines the intertwining notions of “beautiful” and “good” by analyzing the aesthetic and moral standards of contemporary popular culture, represented by the general cultural paradigm of “Hollywood”, understood not only as a filmmaking school, but also as a symbol of global commercial values and aesthetics in general. Hollywood is perceived as conservative regarding the modernist (and contemporary) trend of “separating aesthetics from morals”, insisting on a strong parallelism and correlation between the physical beauty of the protagonist and the morality of his/her actions. This correlation and its applications are actively used in political and ideological propaganda, usually serving the imperialist interests of the American economic and political oligarchy, but is also – especially in the case of artistically best and critically most acclaimed films – often openly subversive toward the values and the political ideology of the USA and Western society in general. The author examines a few examples of moral controversies stemming from the Hollywood paradigms of beauty, as seen in the Game of Thrones TV series, while maintaining that Hollywood aesthetics seems to be more permanent and immutable than the Hollywood ethics, confirming the ancient philosophical paradigm of καλοκαγαθία.