By Espen Hammer
Curiosity in Theodor W. Adorno keeps to develop within the English-speaking global because the value of his contribution to philosophy, social and cultural conception, in addition to aesthetics is more and more well-known. Espen Hammer’s lucid ebook is the 1st to correctly study the political implications of his paintings, paying cautious recognition to Adorno’s paintings on key thinkers corresponding to Kant, Hegel and Benjamin.
Examining Adorno’s political reviews and assessing his engagement with Marxist in addition to liberal thought, Hammer appears on the improvement of Adorno’s proposal as he confronts Fascism and sleek mass tradition. He then analyzes the political measurement of his philosophical and aesthetic theorizing. through addressing Jürgen Habermas’s influential criticisms, he defends Adorno as a theorist of autonomy, accountability and democratic plurality. He additionally discusses Adorno’s relevance to feminist and ecological pondering. instead of those that see Adorno as somebody who relinquished the political, Hammer’s account indicates his reflections to be, at the so much basic point, politically inspired and deeply engaged.
This invigorating exploration of a tremendous political philosopher is an invaluable creation to his concept as an entire, and should be of curiosity to students and scholars within the fields of philosophy, sociology, politics and aesthetics.
“Hammer is to be congratulated for offering a lucid and constant case for the importance of Adorno’s political inspiration, doing justice to its complexity whereas situating it inside its particular historic context.” —Howard Caygill, collage of London
“Clearly written, well-structured ... it's a amazing success to have attained this point of readability a few subject that's this hard and obscure.” —Raymond Geuss, collage of Cambridge
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Extra info for Adorno and the Political
As a result, the phenomena become knowable not in their individual specificity but in terms of their potential for being procedurally subsumed 28 ADORNO’S MARXISM under higher-order terms, categories, or classes. Abstraction and domination go together to form the destructive-productive unity that Adorno comes to associate with the notion of “administered societies,” from which the non-identical, and indeed the very possibility of the new, has been successfully exorcised. Central to Lukács’ reception of Weber’s work, however, is his view that the analysis of rationalization needs to be complemented by a consideration of what Marx called the commodity form.
When Adorno asserts a priority of truth over justice, what he refers to is not truth as correspondence between representation and reality. Rather, the notion of truth-content (Wahrheitsgehalt), which plays a prominent role throughout Adorno’s career, is of Platonic and Hegelian origin: it implies that truth consists in the negation of appearance. Truth is the antithesis of illusion or appearance (Schein); it ineluctably embodies a metaphysical moment aiming to transcend the immanence of appearance.
Of greater significance is another confrontation, less than four months before his death on August 13, 1969, in which Adorno, before an auditorium of almost 1,000 students, was approached by two men who, accompanied by encouraging shouts from the back benches, demanded that he, in Stalinist style, criticize his own decision to evacuate Krahl and his companions from the Institute. When Adorno responded by suggesting that his “attackers” should be given five minutes to decide whether the lecture was to continue or not, 23 ADORNO AND THE POLITICAL three female students appeared on the podium and threw flowers at him while uncovering their breasts and putting on a display of erotic pantomime.