David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Yale University Press (2004)
Theodor W. Adorno—philosopher, cultural critic, sociologist, and music theorist—was one of the most important German intellectuals of the twentieth century. This concise, readable life is the first attempt to look at his philosophical and literary work in its essential political context. Central to Adorno’s intellectual development were his musical training, his father’s Jewish roots, and the rise of National Socialism in Germany, which forced him to emigrate to the United States. While in exile, he and Max Horkheimer wrote Dialectic of Enlightenment, a bold attempt to illuminate the dark side of modernity, and on his own Adorno wrote a series of connected essays on the “culture industry”—his indictment of mass culture. A co-founder of the famous Frankfurt School, Adorno returned to head it after the war, assuming a key role in the intellectual life of postwar West Germany until his untimely death in 1969. Ja;ger’s biography sheds new light on many aspects of Adorno’s life and writings and on his relationships with such figures as Paul Celan, Bertolt Brecht, and Walter Benjamin
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