Aesthetic Realism and Self-Expression
Miriam Mondlin, Aesthetic Realism Consultant

Aesthetic Realism:
Some Beginning Notes —

The Aesthetic Realism Online Library is a definitive source for publications about Aesthetic Realism. For example, visit the online library to learn about how this philosophy, founded by Eli Siegel, explains Poetry, to read Reviews written by Mr. Siegel; reviews of his poetry and prose.—Essays on art and life; Books—including chapters from Self and World, the Williams-Siegel Documentary, James and the Children, Children's Guide to Parents and Other Matters and more.  Articles in the press & media about the ideas and principles of Aesthetic Realism in relation to life, economics, love, art, youth and age and Includes WKCR-FM "The World of Art" interview of Eli Siegel.

Reports of Aesthetic Realism

Here are two reports of Eli Siegel's lectures:"Look, the World is Poetic!" and "The Rhythms: They Are There."

"The Ordinary Doom"
y Eli Siegel

In studying Aesthetic Realism the great interference in every person to expressing just who he or she is, is understood. When we don't know what keeps us from showing ourselves we have "The Ordinary Doom"

The Economy

Aesthetic Realism asks: What is real economic recovery? Do we have it now? Article by Timothy Lynch, President Teamsters Local 1205

Profit Motive of Drug Companies Damaging Seniors' Lives by Devorah Tarrow, sociologist and Aesthetic Realism consultant

On The Family

A Father Seen Anew" by Bruce Blaustein, published in Senior News (Suffolk, New York)

On Anti-Racism

Aesthetic Realism and the Answer to Racism edited by Alice Bernstein

Novel based on Aesthetic Realism:
Gwe, Young Man of New Guinea by Arnold Perey

Reprinted from


Milwaukee Times logo

Opinions and Editorials


March 2001
Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Women's Health Care—A Fundamental Right!

I was outraged to learn from the article in The Milwaukee Times ("Wage Gap, Poverty, Bias Harm Women’s Health," by Melinda Voss 1/4/01} that there are millions of women living in poverty whose health and well-being are seriously affected by the lack of medical services. It is a national disgrace. She quotes from a recent study, "Making the Grade on Women’s Health: A National and State-by-State Report Card" issued by the National Women’s Law Center. It is reported that not one state received a passing mark on women’s health. Millions of women’s lives are endangered because they do not have health insurance and almost one in ten Americans (9.6 percent) live in an area where there are few or no health care providers. Wisconsin ranks 13th and received an Unsatisfactory mark. According to the Report:

More than 13 percent of the nation’s women live in poverty – about 18 million. And, in many states, nearly a quarter of women live in households below the federal poverty level... The gap between wages of men and women also reflects the particular economic hurdles facing women even when not living in poverty. Disparities in income levels and educational attainment are strongly associated with disparities in the occurrence of illness and death.

Behind every statistic is a real person—a woman who worries every day about how she will cover the rent, food and clothing for her children. She may have to choose to neglect her own health so her children can eat. My own mother didn’t go to a doctor when I was a child because she could not afford it, and her health worsened. This was more than 50 years ago and it is unconscionable that Americans are still being deprived of what is a fundamental right.

It is contempt for the life of every citizen that there is not universal health care. Eli Siegel, the great American philosopher, historian and founder of Aesthetic Realism, defined contempt as "the addition to self through the lessening of something else." He explained that contempt is the basis of our economy, where people are paid as little as possible so owners or stockholders can reap as much profit as possible. The profit-driven sky-rocketing prices for prescription drugs force people to go without the medications they so desperately need. Mr. Siegel stated with beautiful passion: "Nobody should ever have to pay for having his body [cared for], even if he wanted to pay…The idea of people worried about their health [and] worried about money is barbarous. It’s ego corruption."

In the international periodical, The Right of Aesthetic Realism to Be Known, Ellen Reiss, the Class Chairman of Aesthetic Realism, explains:

Economics based on some few persons using the needs and labor of others for profit, has continued these decades only through making Americans work under conditions more painful, agitating, insulting than before. Americans have had to work longer hours, increasingly without benefits, without job security, millions are unable to afford medical care... 

To be just to every person, our economy and our health care system must be based on good will, which Mr. Siegel has defined as "the hope of a person that good things happen to things (things include people); with the desire to know what those good things are." And this will come to be when this urgent question stated by Mr. Siegel is asked and answered honestly: "What does a person deserve by being alive?"

Aesthetic Realism is taught in New York City at the Aesthetic Realism Foundation, a not-for-profit educational foundation; 212-777-4490;


This article has been published in other newspapers, including
the African Herald in Texas.

Aesthetic Realism encourages self-expression:

On stuttering— Read, "How My Stuttering Ended." by Miriam Mondlin

The Answer for Our Schools by Arnold Perey, Ph.D,.   —about a young man who stuttered and because of what he learned in Aesthetic Realism consultations—his stuttering diminished.

The high school student, Georges Delong wrote: "I have been able to resolve in large measure my problem regarding stuttering: now it is quite diminished and also I have been able to understand the motive for stuttering.... I hope that... persons who now do not know Aesthetic Realism will come to know it because, believe me, it can resolve millions of problems of people who perhaps now are struggling, perhaps vainly trying to resolve them."

Articles about this Aesthetic Realism question: "What does a person deserve by being a person?" —


"Women's Health Care is a Fundamental Right!"

"Health care for babies — a must!" What Aesthetic Realism encouraged me to see and say.

So-called "Welfare Reform" — what has it done to people?

— And Arnold Perey about an aspect of self-expression--warmth and coolness...

Aesthetic Realism & Art - Does Art Answer the Questions of our Lives?

An aspect of my self-expression has been as an artist. The study of art has been for most of my life, and I've had the pleasure and honor to continue to learn in Aesthetic Realism classes for the visual arts at the Aesthetic Realism Foundation in great classes taught by Chaim Koppelman, and the Critical Inquiry by Dorothy Koppelman.. I will be putting up some of my paintings and drawings on my website in coming days..

A talk I gave in the series at the Terrain Gallery "Art Answers the Questions of Your Life," is here: Van Gogh's great "Starry Night" — Aesthetic Realism shows it's about ourselves. 

More resources...

Photography Education: the
Aesthetic Realism Viewpoint

Aesthetic Realism: A New Perspective for Anthropology & Sociology
Lynette Abel / Aesthetic Realism and Life
Alice Bernstein, Aesthetic Realism Associate
Ellen Reiss writes on the "criticism" of John Keats
Ellen Reiss, Class Chairman, on
poet Robert Burns

About Eli Siegel

Photo from the film, Hot Afternoons Have Been in Montana, by Eli Siegel

”Best U.S. Short”
Avignon/New York Film Festival

"Hot Afternoons
Have Been in Montana"
Directed by Ken Kimmelman,
Emmy award-winning filmmaker

©1999-2009 by Miriam Mondlin. All rights reserved
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