Dialectic of Enlightenment

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9781859841549: Dialectic of Enlightenment

Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer are the leading figures of the Frankfurt School and this book is their magnum opus. Dialectic of Enlightenment is one of the most celebrated works of modern social philosophy and continues to impress in its wide-ranging ambition. Writing just after World War II and reflecting on the bureaucracy and myths of National Socialism and the inanity of the dawn of consumerism, Adorno and Horkheimer addressed themselves to a question which went to the very heart of the modern age: 'why mankind, instead of entering into a truly human condition, is sinking into a new kind of barbarism . Modernity, far from redeeming the promises and hopes of the Enlightenment, had resulted in the stultification of mankind and administered society, characterized by simulation and candy-floss entertainment. Tracing humanity's modern fall to the very rationality that was to be its liberation, the authors exposed the domination and violence that underpin the Enlightenment project.

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From the Inside Flap:

Dialectic of Enlightenment 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 1947. "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."
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.
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.
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.
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.

About the Author:

Theodor Adorno (1903-1969) was Director of the Institute for Social Research at the University of Frankfurt. His works include Aesthetic Theory and Negative Dialectics. Max Horkheimer (1895-1973) was a philosopher and sociologist of the Frankfurt School. His books include A Critique of Instrumental Reason.

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Theodor W. Adorno, Max Horkheimer
Editorial: Verso Books, United Kingdom (1997)
ISBN 10: 1859841546 ISBN 13: 9781859841549
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 10
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Descripción Verso Books, United Kingdom, 1997. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. New edition. Language: English . Brand New Book. Dialectic of Enlightenment is, quite justifiably, one of the most celebrated and often cited works of modern social philosophy. It has been identified as the keystone of the Frankfurt School , of which Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer were the leading members, and does not cease to impress in its wide-ranging ambition and panache. Adorno and Horkheimer addressees themselves to a question which went to the very heart of the modern age, namely why mankind, instead of entering into a truly human condition, is sinking into a new kind of barbarism . Modernity, far from redeeming the promises and hopes of the Enlightenment, had resulted in a stultification of mankind and an administered society, characterised by simulation and candy-floss entertainment. To seek an answer to the question of how such a condition could arise, Adorno and Horkheier subjected the whole history of Western catagories of reason and nature, from Homer to Nietzsche, to a searching philosophical and psychological critique. Drawing on psychoanalytical insights, their own work on the culture industry , deep knowledge of the key Enlightenment and anti-Enlightenment thinkers, as well as fascinating considerations on the relationship between reason and myth - the rational and the irrational - the authors exposed the domination and violence towards both nature and humanity that underpin the Enlightenment project. Nº de ref. de la librería AAJ9781859841549

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Theodor W Adorno
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Descripción Verso Books 1997-11-27, 1997. Hardback. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería NU-MAR-00059744

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Theodor W. Adorno, Max Horkheimer
Editorial: Verso Books, United Kingdom (1997)
ISBN 10: 1859841546 ISBN 13: 9781859841549
Nuevos Paperback Cantidad: 10
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Descripción Verso Books, United Kingdom, 1997. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. New edition. Language: English . Brand New Book. Dialectic of Enlightenment is, quite justifiably, one of the most celebrated and often cited works of modern social philosophy. It has been identified as the keystone of the Frankfurt School , of which Theodor Adorno and Max Horkheimer were the leading members, and does not cease to impress in its wide-ranging ambition and panache. Adorno and Horkheimer addressees themselves to a question which went to the very heart of the modern age, namely why mankind, instead of entering into a truly human condition, is sinking into a new kind of barbarism . Modernity, far from redeeming the promises and hopes of the Enlightenment, had resulted in a stultification of mankind and an administered society, characterised by simulation and candy-floss entertainment. To seek an answer to the question of how such a condition could arise, Adorno and Horkheier subjected the whole history of Western catagories of reason and nature, from Homer to Nietzsche, to a searching philosophical and psychological critique. Drawing on psychoanalytical insights, their own work on the culture industry , deep knowledge of the key Enlightenment and anti-Enlightenment thinkers, as well as fascinating considerations on the relationship between reason and myth - the rational and the irrational - the authors exposed the domination and violence towards both nature and humanity that underpin the Enlightenment project. Nº de ref. de la librería AAJ9781859841549

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Descripción Verso Books, 1997. PAP. Estado de conservación: New. New Book. Shipped from UK in 4 to 14 days. Established seller since 2000. Nº de ref. de la librería CA-9781859841549

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Descripción Verso Books, 1997. Paperback. Estado de conservación: Brand New. 2nd edition. 284 pages. In Stock. Nº de ref. de la librería __1859841546

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Theodor W. Horkheimer Max; Adorno
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