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Jessi Willeto

Humanism surrounds the concept of raising the importance of humans to the same or higher importance of the divine, and can be used to idealize the human body and cause inspiration for the art surrounding it. It emphasizes on the potential rationality and goodness of human beings and treats human beings as rational creatures capable of empathy and thought. In the Greek art we studied this week, we can see the human figure slowly being created realistically and with gesture, such as contrapposto in Classical sculptures as opposed to the ones seen in the Archaic period like the stiff Kore figures. Idealized human forms become developed while still maintaining the familiar human form, becoming less abstract and more literal such as the Aphrodite of Knidos. This reminds me of the change in artistic style during the Amarna period in Egypt– Akhenaten depicted within that period is not as stiff as his precursors, but instead shown with a swollen belly and seen playing with his daughters in a more relaxed and relatable style. The changes in style in both cultures tell us that the focus is less rigid on the divine and more honest with human daily life.