Topics: Parthenon, Plato, Philosophy Pages: 2 (418 words) Published: October 8, 1999
During the Greek Golden Age, art and philosophy expressed hellenic "weltanschauung", their unique outlook on the world and way of life. Through the works of artists, playwrights, and philosophers, one can see both sides of the conflicted systems of the world, such as; good vs. evil, order vs. chaos, stability vs. flux, relativism vs. absolutism and balance and harmony. The Greeks were materialists. They adopted the philosophical doctrine which says that physical matter is the only reality in the universe; everything else, including thought, feeling, mind and will can be explained in terms of physical laws. Their materialism was expressed in an excessive regard for worldly, beautiful material things and concerns. They used their art to show the glories of humanity and man. The sculptors of the Golden Age aimed to create graceful, strong and perfectly formed figures. Their art showed natural positions and thoughtful expressions rather than abstract art forms. Their standards of order and balance became standards for classical art in western civilization. The Greeks were proud of their temples and other architecture, made to honor the gods and beautify the polis (city-state). Their famous architectural styles were the heavy Doric columns and the slender scrolled Ionian columns. The Parthenon, the Greek temple for the goddess Athena, is a impeccable example of symmetry and proportion. The sides of the Parthenon give an optical illusion of perfect balance on all sides. Their desire for balance in art and architecture represents the balance of the world; order and moderation are expressed in the simplicity of lines and shapes. Sophists, who believed that the views of society are standards and the sole measurement of good, truth, justice and beauty. Protagoras was a sophist. He said that, "man is the measure of all things." He believed in a constant flux, and that nothing is absolutely right or wrong, but subject to change. His view is much like that held by...
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