Irene Martinez Marin

PhD student at Department of Philosophy, Aesthetics; Academic Staff

+4618-471 7367
Visiting address:
Engelska parken, Thunbergsvägen 3 H
Postal address:
Box 627
751 26 UPPSALA

I am a PhD candidate in Aesthetics within the Philosophy Department since November 2016. Before moving to Uppsala I worked as an art gallery assistant. Previously, I completed a Master in Art History with a mention in Art Criticism at Autonomous University of Madrid in collaboration with the Museum Reina Sofía (2014), and a Philosophy degree at the University of Murcia (2013).

My research interests include analytic aesthetics, philosophy of emotions, philosophy of film, and value theory.

I am also the coordinator of the Nordic Network for Women in Aesthetics.

You can read more about me and my research here:


Emotions are thought to be an important element in our engagement with artworks and the protagonist of several classic problems in aesthetics. Think of the paradox of fiction, the paradox of negative emotions, or the question of how to make sense of musical emotions. A fourth context in which emotions are also thought to play a relevant role is that of appreciation. However, a rigorous analysis of the nature of aesthetic emotions and the specific functions they play in the grasping of value is still missing in contemporary aesthetics literature. The over-riding aim of this thesis is to fill that gap by putting forward a theory of appreciation that provides us with a systematic understanding of the affective dimension of our aesthetic judgements. My strategy will reveal that we can give a significant epistemic role to the emotions experienced during our engagement with artworks without ruling out the possibility of rationality in our appreciative practices. I will be particularly interested in providing a story about the alleged epistemic justificatory powers that emotions are thought to have in the formation of value judgements. But, as I will argue, the subtlety and cognitive complexity of our emotional responses to art pose a challenge to what is known as the standard view on the evaluative nature of emotions. Being this a perceptual approach to emotions modelled upon the nature of the basic or primary emotions. Following recent criticism against the standard view, I will argue that emotions do not constitute reasons or evidence for our aesthetic judgements in a similar way to how perceptions constitute reasons for empirical beliefs. I propose a different model for aesthetics by focusing on the nature of the so-called intellectual emotions. As we will see, a better explanation of what emotions can do is to motivate an agent to search for the reasons that will support her aesthetic judgement. Emotions in my view are going to work as ‘mediators’ between aesthetic reasons and aesthetic explanations. This is a novel way of understanding the links between emotions, reasons, and aesthetic value that might be promising for aesthetic normativity.

Publications peer-reviewed

Book Review

  • Wittgenstein: Arte y Filosofía, ed. Julián Marrades, Plaza y Valdés Editores, Madrid, 2013, in Daimón. Revista Internacional de Filosofía, 64, 2015.

Book Chapter

  • (Forthcoming). Aesthetic Taste: Perceptual Discernment or Emotional Sensibility? In Perspectives on Taste. Edited by Jeremy Wyatt, Dan Zeman and Julia Zakkou. Routledge. (Co-authored with Elisabeth Schellekens).
  • ‘Bienvenida Ternura. Emoción y Narración en la Nueva Serialidad Televisiva’, Cine y Series, ed. Alberto Nahum & María J. Ortiz. Comunicación Social. (2018).

Selected Presentations

  • Aesthetic Akrasia and Agency. Aesthetics Higher Seminar, Uppsala University, December 2020.

  • Non-Standard Emotions and Aesthetic Understanding. European Society for Aesthetics, Warsaw, June 2019.* (Winner of the Fabian Dorsch Essay Prize).

  • Art Appreciation: whether you like it or not. British Society for Aesthetics Annual Meeting, University of Oxford, September 2019.*

  • Non-Standard Emotions and Aesthetic Understanding. American Society for Aesthetics Annual Meeting, Phoenix, October 2019.*

  • Comments on Nick Riggle's "Invitation and Aesthetic Communication", Uppsala University, March 2019.

  • Non-Standard Emotions and Aesthetic Understanding. Emotions and Emotions Concepts Conference, University of Bern, November 2018.

  • Appreciating Reflective Emotions in Art. British Society for Aesthetics Annual Meeting, University of Oxford, September, 2018.

  • The Artist’s Word: Artistic Intentions and Emotional Understanding. American Society for Aesthetics Annual Meeting, Toronto, October 2018.

  • The Artist’s Word: Artistic Intentions and Emotional Understanding. European Society for Aesthetics, June 2018. (Shortlisted ESA essay prize).

  • Comments on Christine Tappolet's Emotions, Values and Agency (Oxford UP, 2016). Workshop Philosophy of Emotions, Uppsala University, April 2018.

  • Understanding (without) Feeling. The Case of Nostalgic Expression. The Cognitive Relevance of Aesthetics, University of Tampere, September 2017.

  • Remembering Seymour Glass. Spring School The Role of Empathy and Emotion in Understanding Fiction, GSGG Göttingen, March 2017.

  • When Wes Anderson met Prada: Sentimental emotions in Fashion Films, Aesthetics, Fashion, and Psychology Conference, London College of Fashion, July 2016.

  • The Nostalgic Royal Tenenbaums. A defense of Wes Anderson sentimentality. Film-Philosophy Conference, University of Oxford. July 2015.

Please contact the directory administrator for the organization (department or similar) to correct possible errors in the information.

Irene Martinez Marin