Proust And Rilke: The Literature Of Expanded Consciousness

No description available


The Work of Art in the Age of Its Technological Reproducibility, and Other Writings on Media

p Benjamin s famous Work of Art essay sets out his boldest thoughts on media and on culture in general in their most realized form while retaining an edge that gets under the skin of everyone who reads it In this essay the visual arts of the machine age morph into literature and theory and then back again to images gestures and thought p p This essay however is only the beginning of a vast collection of writings that the editors have assembled to demonstrate what was revolutionary about Benjamin s explorations on media Long before Marshall McLuhan Benjamin saw that the way a bullet rips into its victim is exactly the way a movie or pop song lodges in the soul p p This book contains the second and most daring of the four versions of the Work of Art essay the one that addresses the utopian developments of the modern media The collection tracks Benjamin s observations on the media as they are revealed in essays on the production and reception of art on film radio and photography and on the modern transformations of literature and painting The volume contains some of Benjamin s best known work alongside fascinating little known essays some appearing for the first time in English In the context of his passionate engagement with questions of aesthetics the scope of Benjamin s media theory can be fully appreciated p


Reflections: Essays, Aphorisms, Autobiographical Writings

A companion volume to i Illuminations i the first collection of Walter Benjamin s writings i Reflections i presents a further sampling of his wide ranging work Here Benjamin evolves a theory of language as the medium of all creation discusses theater and surrealism reminisces about Berlin in the s recalls conversations with Bertolt Brecht and provides travelogues of various cities including Moscow under Stalin He moves seamlessly from literary criticism to autobiography to philosophical theological speculations cementing his reputation as one of the greatest and most versatile writers of the twentieth century Also included is a new preface by Leon Wieseltier that explores Benjamin s continued relevance for our times


The Writer of Modern Life: Essays on Charles Baudelaire

Walter Benjamin s essays on the great French lyric poet Charles Baudelaire revolutionized not just the way we think about Baudelaire but our understanding of modernity and modernism as well In these essays Benjamin challenges the image of Baudelaire as late Romantic dreamer and evokes instead the modern poet caught in a life or death struggle with the forces of the urban commodity capitalism that had emerged in Paris around The Baudelaire who steps forth from these pages is the flAneur who affixes images as he strolls through mercantile Paris the ragpicker who collects urban detritus only to turn it into poetry the modern hero willing to be marked by modern life in its contradictions and paradoxes He is in every instance the modern artist forced to commodify his literary production Baudelaire knew how it stood with the poet as a flAneur he went to the market to look it over as he thought but in reality to find a buyer Benjamin reveals Baudelaire as a social poet of the very first rank br br The introduction to this volume presents each of Benjamin s essays on Baudelaire in chronological order The introduction intended for an undergraduate audience aims to articulate and analyze the major motifs and problems in these essays and to reveal the relationship between the essays and Benjamin s other central statements on literature its criticism and its relation to the society that produces it


Mahler: A Musical Physiognomy

Theodor W Adorno goes beyond conventional thematic analysis to gain a more complete understanding of Mahler s music through his character his social and philosophical background and his moment in musical history Adorno examines the composer s works as a continuous and unified development that began with his childhood response to the marches and folk tunes of his native Bohemia br br Since its appearance in in German i Mahler i has established itself as a classic of musical interpretation Now available in English the work is presented here in a translation that captures the stylistic brilliance of the original br br Theodor W Adorno one of the foremost members of the Frankfurt school of critical theory studied with Alban Berg in Vienna during the late twenties and was later the director of the Institute of Social Research at the University of Frankfurt from until his death His works include i Aesthectic Theory Introduction to the Sociology of Music The Jargon of Authenticity Prism i and i Philosophy of Modern Music i


Power & Civility (The Civilizing Process, Vol. 2)

This is Volume of Elias s i The Civilizing Process i In it Elias widens his scope to examine the social economic and political changes in European society from the time of Charlemagne to the twentieth century and constructs a highly original theory of the formation of the state and the growth of power His explanation of the social process by which the private power monopoly of kings turned into the public power monopoly of the modern nation state concludes with a stunning synopsis proposing the beginnings of a theory of the process of civilization


Medieval Woman

Dall et dei Merovingi alle soglie del Rinascimento una ricostruzione puntuale e dettagliata dei concreti modi di vita delle donne dei vari ceti sociali nelle diverse situazioni e nei molteplici ruoli privati e pubblici Numerosi abbozzi biografici di principesse sante e donne del popolo accrescono la vivacit e l immediatezza del quadro storico


Dialectic of Enlightenment

i Dialectic of Enlightenment i is undoubtedly the most influential publication of the Frankfurt School of Critical Theory Written during the Second World War and circulated privately it appeared in a printed edition in Amsterdam in What we had set out to do the authors write in the Preface was nothing less than to explain why humanity instead of entering a truly human state is sinking into a new kind of barbarism br br Yet the work goes far beyond a mere critique of contemporary events Historically remote developments indeed the birth of Western history and of subjectivity itself out of the struggle against natural forces as represented in myths are connected in a wide arch to the most threatening experiences of the present br br The book consists in five chapters at first glance unconnected together with a number of shorter notes The various analyses concern such phenomena as the detachment of science from practical life formalized morality the manipulative nature of entertainment culture and a paranoid behavioral structure expressed in aggressive anti Semitism that marks the limits of enlightenment The authors perceive a common element in these phenomena the tendency toward self destruction of the guiding criteria inherent in enlightenment thought from the beginning Using historical analyses to elucidate the present they show against the background of a prehistory of subjectivity why the National Socialist terror was not an aberration of modern history but was rooted deeply in the fundamental characteristics of Western civilization br br Adorno and Horkheimer see the self destruction of Western reason as grounded in a historical and fateful dialectic between the domination of external nature and society They trace enlightenment which split these spheres apart back to its mythical roots Enlightenment and myth therefore are not irreconcilable opposites but dialectically mediated qualities of both real and intellectual life Myth is already enlightenment and enlightenment reverts to mythology This paradox is the fundamental thesis of the book br br This new translation based on the text in the complete edition of the works of Max Horkheimer contains textual variants commentary upon them and an editorial discussion of the position of this work in the development of Critical Theory


The Court Society

This classic study of the life of the nobility at the royal court of France especially under Louis XIV has long been out of print Here Elias shows how courtiers and finally even the king himself were entrapped in web of etiquette and ceremony how their expenses even down to details of their houses and household were dictated by their rank rather than their income


The Civilizing Process

i The Civilizing Process i stands out as Norbert Elias greatest work tracing the civilizing of manners and personality in Western Europe since the late Middle Ages by demonstrating how the formation of states and the monopolization of power within them changed Western society forever