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Prismatic Thought

Theodor W. Adorno

By , (Author)

Paperback published by University of Nebraska Press

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About This Book
A leading figure in the Frankfurt School of philosophers from the 1930s through the time of his death in 1969, Adorno was the author of influential philosophical and sociological works on issues ranging from aesthetics, music history, and mass culture to politics, modern technology, and the Western philosophical tradition.
 
Prismatic Thoughtis a brilliant tour of Adorno’s work, with special emphasis on his aesthetic writings. Peter Uwe Hohendahl opens with a pair of chapters that considers Adorno’s years of exile in the United States during the Second World War and his return in the early 1950s to a West Germany harrowed by its recent Nazi past and responsibility for the Holocaust. He then examines Adorno’s writings on literature, language, poetry, philosophy, and mass culture in relation to modern history. Throughout the book, Hohendahl argues that Adorno’s work "ultimately resists the desire for systematic order, the search for a grand design that gives meaning to all the individual texts."
 
Prismatic Thoughtis distinguished by Hohendahl’s sensitivity to the historical and intellectual conditions of Adorno’s time and by his mastery of the myriad Adorno studies of the past twenty-five years. Equally important is his description of Adorno’s relevance to our own age. In the course of situating Adorno in his own era, Hohendahl introduces us to an Adorno who is also our contemporary.
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A leading figure in the Frankfurt School of philosophers from the 1930s through the time of his death in 1969, Adorno was the author of influential philosophical and sociological works on issues ranging from aesthetics, music history, and mass culture to politics, modern technology, and the Western philosophical tradition.
 
Prismatic Thoughtis a brilliant tour of Adorno’s work, with special emphasis on his aesthetic writings. Peter Uwe Hohendahl opens with a pair of chapters that considers Adorno’s years of exile in the United States during the Second World War and his return in the early 1950s to a West Germany harrowed by its recent Nazi past and responsibility for the Holocaust. He then examines Adorno’s writings on literature, language, poetry, philosophy, and mass culture in relation to modern history. Throughout the book, Hohendahl argues that Adorno’s work "ultimately resists the desire for systematic order, the search for a grand design that gives meaning to all the individual texts."
 
Prismatic Thoughtis distinguished by Hohendahl’s sensitivity to the historical and intellectual conditions of Adorno’s time and by his mastery of the myriad Adorno studies of the past twenty-five years. Equally important is his description of Adorno’s relevance to our own age. In the course of situating Adorno in his own era, Hohendahl introduces us to an Adorno who is also our contemporary.
Product Details
Paperback (287 pages)
Published: April 28, 1997
Publisher: University of Nebraska Press
ISBN: 9780803273054
Other books byPeter U. Hohendahl
  • Critical Theory

    Critical Theory
    Current State and Future Prospects
    The retirement of the distinguished philosopher Jürgen Habermas from his chair at the University of Frankfurt signalled an important caesura in the history of Critical Theory: the transition from the Habermasian project, to different forms of inquiry in the work of the next generation. This change-over happens at a time when it has become clear that Habermas's systematic exploration of communicative rationality has reached the point where both its achievements and its limitations had become evident. The essays collected in this volume address the problems connected with this transition, partly by returning to the insights of the first generation (Adorno and Benjamin), partly by focusing on questions raised by Habermas's work. Whatever the difference in the authors' positions, this collection gains its unity through their common interest in the significance and value of Critical Theory today and in its future as a philosophical project.

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