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Professor Gombrich's last book and first narrative book in over 20 years. Studies the idea that older and less sophisticated (i.e. 'primitive') artworks are morally and aesthetically superior to newer ones that in our present time are decadent. Takes a long view of the subject, finding the theme expressed in key documents of classical antiquity, resuming the debate in the 18th century, and culminating in an examination of the radical expressions of primitivism in modern times Summing up more than 40 years of study and reflection on this theme, the book presents a closely argued narrative supported by extensive quotations that document with precision the role of authors, critics and artists in shaping and changing opinion Important.