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Contemporary Aesthetics Special Volume on AI | Call for Papers

Contemporary Aesthetics invites paper submissions for a Special Volume entitled ‘How will AI Change the Field of Academic Aesthetics?’.

Over the past few years, Artificial Intelligence, AI, has increasingly entered our everyday lives and different versions of it are changing our political, medical, economic, creative, recreational and many other practices. It is impossible not to use and be affected by AI because our cars, smartphones, factories, and electrical networks, for example, are dependent on it.

The broad field of aesthetics, spanning the whole varied spectrum of art–non-art, has also been affected by this process, and scholars of aesthetics have increasingly turned their attention to the implications of AI. A few examples include Lev Manovich & Emanuele Arielli’s series of texts “Artificial Aesthetics: A Critical Guide to AI, Media and Design” (2021-2024); Eduardo Navas’ book The Rise of Metacreativity – An Aesthetics after Remix (2023); Special Issue of AI and Society, n. 26, vol. 4 (2021); Andrew Samo & Scott Highhouse’s article ”Artificial intelligence and art: Identifying the aesthetic judgment factors that distinguish human- and machine-generated artwork“ (2023); and the recent debate on the website “Aesthetics for birds” (2023). On 14 December 2023, the Google search engine gave 3,020,000,000 results on the search “AI and art” and 405,000,000 on “AI and aesthetics”, and the numbers are constantly growing. 

Often, the current debate is devoted to assessing the nature and value of art generated by AI.  This special issue of Contemporary Aesthetics has a different and more tightly focused aim. We would like to investigate how the phenomena and implications of AI affect a specific area of aesthetics, namely the academic discipline. The core questions orienting this call for papers address the future of aesthetics. How will researching, writing, studying, learning, and teaching aesthetics happen in the age of AI? How to use AI responsibly, or sensibly, in an academic field that is challenged by new elements entering it after it has evolved in very different ways over the past centuries? What kinds of AI technologies are used now and in the future and how will they transform our field? What will remain unchanged and why?

Areas of interest can be, but are not limited to, the following:
—AI’s Role Beyond Its Traditional Domains: What areas of AI, traditionally applied to other fields of research, can have a role in the development of academic aesthetics? 
—Human-AI Collaboration in Aesthetics: What kind of contribution the human agent can or must provide in this framework?
—Enhancing Aesthetic Literature with AI: How can traditional and contemporary aesthetic literature benefit from AI-fueled research? 
—Revisiting Aesthetic History through AI: Is it possible to re-write the history of aesthetics through AI?
—Educational Transformation via AI: What are the educational implications of AI in the field of aesthetics?
—Potential Risks of AI in Aesthetics: What kinds of risks does AI pose?

Submission details:
The deadline for submissions is 30 June 2024.
Please send the submissions and inquiries to: gioialaura.iannilli2@unibo.it

The maximum length is 7,000 words including endnotes and abstract. Please follow carefully the submission guidelines of Contemporary Aestheticshttps://contempaesthetics.org/submissions/.

The guest editors for the issue are Gioia Laura Iannilli (Bologna University) and Ossi Naukkarinen (Aalto University), with co-editor Enrico Glerean (Aalto University).