Search Results: illuminations-essays-and-reflections

Illuminations

Essays and Reflections

Author: Walter Benjamin

Publisher: HMH

ISBN: 0547540655

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 288

View: 1386

Essays and reflections from one of the twentieth century’s most original cultural critics, with an introduction by Hannah Arendt. Walter Benjamin was an icon of criticism, renowned for his insight on art, literature, and philosophy. This volume includes his views on Kafka, with whom he felt a close personal affinity; his studies on Baudelaire and Proust; and his essays on Leskov and Brecht’s epic theater. Illuminations also includes his penetrating study “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction,” an enlightening discussion of translation as a literary mode; and his theses on the philosophy of history. Hannah Arendt selected the essays for this volume and introduces them with a classic essay about Benjamin’s life in a dark historical era. Leon Wieseltier’s preface explores Benjamin’s continued relevance for our times. Walter Benjamin (1892–1940) was a German-Jewish Marxist literary critic, essayist, translator, and philosopher. He was at times associated with the Frankfurt School of critical theory and was also greatly inspired by the Marxism of Bertolt Brecht and Jewish mysticism as presented by Gershom Scholem.​

Fire Alarm

Reading Walter Benjamin's On the Concept of History

Author: Michael Löwy,Chris Turner

Publisher: Verso

ISBN: 9781844670406

Category: Philosophy

Page: 148

View: 6157

Revolutionary critic of the philosophy of progress, nostalgic of the past yet dreaming of the future, romantic partisan of materialism... Walter Benjamin is in every sense of the word an "unclassifiable" philosopher. His essay 'On the Concept of History' was written in a state of urgency, as he attempted to escape the Gestapo in 1940, before finally committing suicide. Michael Lowy argues that it remains one of the most important philosophical and political writings of the twentieth century, in this scrupulous, clear and fascinating examination. Looking in detail at Benjamin's celebrated but often mysterious text, and restoring the philosophical, theological and political context, Lowy highlights the complex relationship between redemption and revolution in Benjamin's philosophy of history.

Illuminations from the Past

Trauma, Memory, and History in Modern China

Author: Ban Wang

Publisher: Stanford University Press

ISBN: 9780804750998

Category: History

Page: 311

View: 8806

This book offers a cultural history of modern China by looking at the tension between memory and history. Mainstream books on China tend to focus on the hard aspects of economics, government, politics, or international relations. This book takes a humanistic look at modern changes and examines how Chinese intellectuals and artists experienced trauma, social upheavals, and transformations. Drawing on a wide array of sources in political and aesthetic writings, literature, film, and public discourse, the author has portrayed the unique ways the Chinese imagine and portray their own historical destiny in the midst of trauma, catastrophe, and runaway globalization.

Understanding Brecht (New Edition)

Author: Walter Benjamin

Publisher: Verso

ISBN: 9781859844182

Category:

Page: 124

View: 8767

Collection of Benjamin's writings on the poetic and dramatic work of his tutor and friend.

The Storyteller

Tales out of Loneliness

Author: Walter Benjamin

Publisher: Verso Books

ISBN: 1784783072

Category: Fiction

Page: 240

View: 1544

A beautiful collection of the legendary thinker’s short stories The Storyteller gathers for the first time the fiction of the legendary critic and philosopher Walter Benjamin, best known for his groundbreaking studies of culture and literature, including Illuminations, One-Way Street and The Arcades Project. His stories revel in the erotic tensions of city life, cross the threshold between rational and hallucinatory realms, celebrate the importance of games, and delve into the peculiar relationship between gambling and fortune-telling, and explore the themes that defined Benjamin. The novellas, fables, histories, aphorisms, parables and riddles in this collection are brought to life by the playful imagery of the modernist artist and Bauhaus figure Paul Klee. From the Trade Paperback edition.

On Hashish

Author: Walter Benjamin

Publisher: Harvard University Press

ISBN: 9780674022218

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 180

View: 6864

Walter Benjamin's posthumously published collection of writings on hashish is a detailed blueprint for a book that was never written. A series of "protocols of drug experiments," written between 1927 and 1934, together with short prose pieces, "On Hashish" provides a peculiarly intimate portrait of Benjamin and of his unique form of thought.

Aesthetics and Politics

Author: Ernst Bloch,Fredric Jameson

Publisher: Verso

ISBN: 9780860917229

Category: Aesthetics

Page: 220

View: 6509

No other country and no other period has produced a tradition of major aesthetic debate to compare with that which unfolded in German culture from the 1930s to the 1950s. In Aesthetics and Politics the key texts of the great Marxist controversies over literature and art during these years are assembled in a single volume. They do not form a disparate collection but a continuous, interlinked debate between thinkers who have become giants of twentieth-century intellectual history.

Walter Benjamin's Archive

Images, Texts, Signs

Author: Walter Benjamin

Publisher: Verso Books

ISBN: 178478205X

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 320

View: 7456

An absorbing selection of Walter Benjamin’s personal manuscripts, images, and documents The work of the great literary and cultural critic Walter Benjamin is an audacious plotting of history, art, and thought; a reservoir of texts, commentaries, scraps, and fragments of everyday life, art, and dreams. Throughout his life, Benjamin gathered together all kinds of artifacts, assortments of images, texts, and signs, themselves representing experiences, ideas, and hopes, each of which was enthusiastically logged, systematized, and analyzed by their author. In this way, Benjamin laid the groundwork for the salvaging of his own legacy. Intricate and intimate, Walter Benjamin’s Archive leads readers to the heart of his intellectual world, yielding a rich and detailed portrait of its author. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Walter Benjamin at the Dairy Queen

Reflections on Sixty and Beyond

Author: Larry McMurtry

Publisher: Simon and Schuster

ISBN: 9781439127599

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 208

View: 562

In a lucid, brilliant work of nonfiction -- as close to an autobiography as his readers are likely to get -- Larry McMurtry has written a family portrait that also serves as a larger portrait of Texas itself, as it was and as it has become. Using as a springboard an essay by the German literary critic Walter Benjamin that he first read in Archer City's Dairy Queen, McMurtry examines the small-town way of life that big oil and big ranching have nearly destroyed. He praises the virtues of everything from a lime Dr. Pepper to the lost art of oral storytelling, and describes the brutal effect of the sheer vastness and emptiness of the Texas landscape on Texans, the decline of the cowboy, and the reality and the myth of the frontier. McMurtry writes frankly and with deep feeling about his own experiences as a writer, a parent, and a heart patient, and he deftly lays bare the raw material that helped shape his life's work: the creation of a vast, ambitious, fictional panorama of Texas in the past and the present. Throughout, McMurtry leaves his readers with constant reminders of his all-encompassing, boundless love of literature and books.

The Writer of Modern Life

Essays on Charles Baudelaire

Author: Walter Benjamin

Publisher: Harvard University Press

ISBN: 9780674022874

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 306

View: 9639

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 1850. The Baudelaire who steps forth from these pages is the flâneur 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 flâneur 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. 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.

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

Author: Walter Benjamin

Publisher: Harvard University Press

ISBN: 9780674024458

Category: Social Science

Page: 426

View: 3403

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. 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. 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.

The Arcades Project

Author: Walter Benjamin,Rolf Tiedemann

Publisher: Harvard University Press

ISBN: 9780674043268

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 1073

View: 5127

Critiquing the arcades of nineteenth-century Paris--glass-roofed rows of shops that served as early malls--the author, who wrote the work in the 1920s and 1930s, covers thirty-six still-trenchant topics, including fashion, boredom, photography, advertising, and prostitution, among others.

The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction

Author: Walter Benjamin

Publisher: Createspace Independent Publishing Platform

ISBN: 9781537079714

Category:

Page: 36

View: 7209

The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction is an essay by German cultural critic Walter Benjamin that has been influential across the humanities, especially in the fields of cultural studies, media theory, architectural theory, and art history. Walter Benjamin wrote the work in an effort to describe a theory of art that would be useful for the formulation of revolutionary demands in the politics of art. He argued that, in the absence of any traditional, ritualistic value, art in the age of mechanical reproduction would inherently be based on the practice of politics. Walter Benjamin was a German Jewish philosopher and cultural critic. An eclectic thinker, combining elements of German idealism, Romanticism, Western Marxism, and Jewish mysticism, Walter Benjamin made enduring and influential contributions to aesthetic theory, literary criticism, and historical materialism. In addition, Walter Benjamin's work has also influenced politics & social sciences, politics & government, ideologies & doctrines, communism & socialism, and arts & photography.

Body-and Image-Space

Re-Reading Walter Benjamin

Author: Sigrid Weigel

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134837518

Category: Philosophy

Page: 224

View: 9618

The last decade has seen a new wave of interest in philosophical and theoretical circles in the writings of Walter Benjamin. In Body-and Image-Space Sigrid Weigel, one of Germany's leading feminist theorists and a renowned commentator on the work of Walter Benjamin, argues that the reception of his work has so far overlooked a crucial aspect of his thought - his use of images. Weigel shows that it is precisely his practice of thinking in images that holds the key to understanding the full complexity, richness and topicality of Benjamin's theory.

One-Dimensional Man

Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society

Author: Herbert Marcuse

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 113443880X

Category: Philosophy

Page: 288

View: 9633

One of the most important texts of modern times, Herbert Marcuse's analysis and image of a one-dimensional man in a one-dimensional society has shaped many young radicals' way of seeing and experiencing life. Published in 1964, it fast became an ideological bible for the emergent New Left. As Douglas Kellner notes in his introduction, Marcuse's greatest work was a 'damning indictment of contemporary Western societies, capitalist and communist.' Yet it also expressed the hopes of a radical philosopher that human freedom and happiness could be greatly expanded beyond the regimented thought and behaviour prevalent in established society. For those who held the reigns of power Marcuse's call to arms threatened civilization to its very core. For many others however, it represented a freedom hitherto unimaginable.

One-Way Street and Other Writings

Author: Walter Benjamin

Publisher: Penguin UK

ISBN: 0141189479

Category: History

Page: 278

View: 7410

Translated by J. A. Underwood With an Introduction by Amit Choudhuri 'There has been no more original, no more serious, critic and reader in our time' George Steiner Walter Benjamin - philosopher, essayist, literary and cultural theorist - was one of the most original writers and thinkers of the twentieth century. This new selection brings together Benjamin's major works, including 'One-Way Street', a series of aphoristic observations prompted by urban life in 1920s Europe; 'Unpacking My Library', a delightful meditation on book-collecting; the confessional 'Hashish in Marseille'; and 'The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction', his seminal essay on how technology changes the way we appreciate art. Also including writings on subjects ranging from Proust to Kafka, violence to surrealism, this is the essential volume on one of the most prescient critical voices of the modern age. 'One of the most celebrated intellectuals of the twentieth century' Guardian

Unthought

The Power of the Cognitive Nonconscious

Author: Katherine Hayles

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 022644788X

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 250

View: 1499

N. Katherine Hayles is known for breaking new ground at the intersection of the sciences and the humanities. In Unthought, she once again bridges disciplines by revealing how we think without thinking—how we use cognitive processes that are inaccessible to consciousness yet necessary for it to function. Marshalling fresh insights from neuroscience, cognitive science, cognitive biology, and literature, Hayles expands our understanding of cognition and demonstrates that it involves more than consciousness alone. Cognition, as Hayles defines it, is applicable not only to nonconscious processes in humans but to all forms of life, including unicellular organisms and plants. Startlingly, she also shows that cognition operates in the sophisticated information-processing abilities of technical systems: when humans and cognitive technical systems interact, they form “cognitive assemblages”—as found in urban traffic control, drones, and the trading algorithms of finance capital, for instance—and these assemblages are transforming life on earth. The result is what Hayles calls a “planetary cognitive ecology,” which includes both human and technical actors and which poses urgent questions to humanists and social scientists alike. At a time when scientific and technological advances are bringing far-reaching aspects of cognition into the public eye, Unthought reflects deeply on our contemporary situation and moves us toward a more sustainable and flourishing environment for all beings.

Walter Benjamin

Dreams

Author: Consultant Statistician Walter Benjamin

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9783981337075

Category:

Page: N.A

View: 6357

Though published during his lifetime, Walter Benjamin's dream notes and theoretical reflections on dreams are collected here for the first time in a single volume. Dreams highlights a dimension of Benjamin's thinking that was invaluable for his writing and thought but which has thus far received little attention. The first section, "Dream Notes," is a comprehensive and chronological collection of Benjamin's transcriptions of his own dreams and includes unpublished manuscript materials. The second section, "On Perception of Dreams: Awakening and Dream," features his theoretical reflections on dreams, ranging from short aphorisms and longer analyses of dream literature and the history of dreams to the political conception of a "dreaming collective" and its awakening. Editor Burkhardt Lindner describes Benjamin's literary approach to his own dreams in the epilogue and gives a sketch of Benjamin's own definition of the dream sphere, independent of and in contrast to Surrealism and Freud's interpretation of dreams. This handsome, pocket-sized reader presents Benjamin as both a great dreamer and an important theorist of dreams. Walter Benjamin (1892-1940) is one of the 20th century's most influential theorists and critics. A member of the Frankfurt school alongside Theodor Adorno, Ernst Bloch and Max Horkheimer, he also maintained close friendships with thinkers such as Marxist theorist Georg Lukacs, playwright Bertolt Brecht and Kabbalah scholar Gershom Scholem. Among Benjamin's best-known works are the essays "The Task of the Translator" (1923), "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction" (1936) and "Theses on the Philosophy of History" (1940). His major work as a literary critic included essays on Baudelaire, Goethe, Kafka, Kraus, Leskov, Proust, Walser and Scheerbart. In 1940, at the age of 48, Benjamin committed suicide in Portbou at the French-Spanish border while attempting to escape from invading Nazi forces.

A Short History of Photography

Author: Harvey Benge,Gerry Badger

Publisher: Godwit

ISBN: 9781869621445

Category: Photography, Artistic

Page: 88

View: 6421

While looking through his contact sheets in 2007 Harvey Benge noticed that one of his pictures reminded him of a Friedlander, another of an Atget, yet others of a Tillmans, a Baldessari and Adams a Picking them out he decided to make what leading UK photography critic Gerry Badger describes in his opening essay as an 'anthology' of contemporary photography featuring some of its biggest names. The result is a sharply curated and perfectly formed collection of intriguing, beguiling and seductive images, sure to delight the photography aficionado and newcomer alike. 'Of course they are all genuine original Benges. And it is important that they are all good pictures, not mere pastiches of the "originals" of which they gently but insistently remind one. This may be a game, but games can be very serious, and this is both as serious and light-hearted exploration of photographic style.' - Gerry Badger

The Storyteller Essays

Author: Walter Benjamin

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9781681370583

Category:

Page: 136

View: 3676

A new translation of philosopher Walter Benjamin's work as it pertains to his famous essay, "The Storyteller," this collection includes short stories, book reviews, parables, and as a selection of writings by other authors who had an influence on Benjamin's work. Walter Benjamin's "The Storyteller" is among the greatest and most widely-read essays of this ever-suggestive but also enigmatic master thinker. Published in 1936 in a obscure Swiss review, "The Storyteller" was the product of at least a decade's ongoing reflection and composition. What might be called the story of "The Storyteller" starts in 1926, when Benjamin wrote an essay about one of his favorite writers, the German romantic Johann Peter Hebel, and then continues in a beautiful series of short essays, book reviews (of Arnold Bennett's novel "The Old Wives' Tale," among others), short stories, parables ("The Handkerchief," written in Ibiza in 1932-33), and even radio shows for children ("The Earthquake in Lisbon"). In this new collection all these writings are brought together in one place, giving us a new appreciation of how Benjamin's thinking changed and ripened over time. Benjamin's superb and wonderfully readable writings are further accompanied by some key readings of his own--texts by his contemporaries Ernst Bloch, Georg Lukacs, and Jean Paulhan; by Paul Valery; and by Herodotus and Montaigne--and finally, to bring things round, there are two short stories by "the incomparable Hebel" with whom Benjamin's intellectual adventure began. Tess Lewis's maginificent new translation of Benjamin's writings further refresh our understanding of the work, while editor Samuel Titan's introduction fills in the biographical and intellectual context in which Benjamin's "Storyteller" came to life.

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