Kendal Walton


Professor Kendall Walton is coming to Kent at the end of this month for a symposium about his writings on photography and film. Until the event, I shall write a series of posts explaining some of his ideas. It is a way of engaging with his influential work and preparing for the two-day conference.

Kendall Walton teaches philosophy at the University of Michigan. His web page succinctly informs us about his research and academic history:

Much of Professor Walton’s work consists in exploring connections between theoretical questions about the arts and issues of philosophy of mind, metaphysics, and philosophy of language. His book Mimesis as Make Believe: On the Foundations of the Representational Arts, develops a theory of make-believe and uses it to understand the nature and varieties of representation in the arts. He has written extensively on pictorial representation, fiction and the emotions, the ontological status of fictional entities, the aesthetics of music, metaphor, and aesthetic value. He has held fellowships from the NEH, the ACLS, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Stanford Humanities Center. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and President of the American Society for Aesthetics.