Dialectic of Enlightenment: Philosophical Fragments

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Stanford University Press, 2002 - Gardening - 282 pages
22 Reviews
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.
  

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Review: Dialectic of Enlightenment: Philosophical Fragments

User Review  - Emre Yavuz - Goodreads

Adorno and Horkheimer investigates how adventure of enlighment became the nightmare of the modern man in the light of ancient tales. Hard to read, especially from a translation. But useful to get the principles of the Frankfurt School. Read full review

Review: Dialectic of Enlightenment: Philosophical Fragments

User Review  - Jackson Lipovich - Goodreads

It is a shame to say that this work was, on the whole, inaccessible to me. I was able to follow the thread of thought only on the most superficial levels, and even then, I would not venture to ... Read full review

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Contents

Odysseus or Myth and Enlightenment
35
Juliette or Enlightenment and Morality
63
Enlightenment as Mass Deception
94
Limits of Enlightenment
137
Notes and Sketches
173
Editors Afterword
217
The Disappearance of Class History in Dialectic
248
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Dialectic of Enlightenment - Max Horkheimer and Theodor W. Adorno ...
Dialectic of Enlightenment is undoubtedly the most influential publication of the Frankfurt School of Critical Theory. Written during the Second World War ...
www.sup.org/ book.cgi?book_id=3632%203633

Summary : Dialectic of Enlightenment « Introducing the Frankfurt ...
In Dialectic of Enlightenment, Horkheimer and Adorno contest Kant and the positivity of Enlightenment. For Horkheimer and Adorno, there is a continuity of ...
frankfurtschool.wordpress.com/ 2008/ 02/ 28/ summary-dialectic-of-enlightenment/

Roughtheory.org » Fragmentary Thoughts on Dialectic of Enlightenment
This account of human prehistory and the impacts of class domination on perception and thought is explored most clearly in The Dialectic of Enlightenment, ...
www.roughtheory.org/ content/ fragmentary-thoughts-on-dialectic-of-enlightenment/

Language, Mythology, and Enlightenment: Historical Notes on ...
To reread the Dialectic of Enlightenment (Horkheimer and Adorno, 1972[1947]) ... At fifty, the Dialectic of Enlightenment has become one of those books that ...
findarticles.com/ p/ articles/ mi_m2267/ is_/ ai_54098120

Dialectic of Enlightenment by wikipedia | The Smirking Chimp
One core point of the dialectic of enlightenment is “enlightenment as mass deceit.†Culture industry means the commercial marketing of culture, ...
www.smirkingchimp.com/ thread/ 4600

Dialectic of Enlightenment - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Dialectic of Enlightenment, is the core text of Marxist Critical Theory explaining the socio-psychological status quo that had been responsible for, ...
en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/ Dialectic_of_Enlightenment

Ralph Dumain: "The Autodidact Project": Jeffrey Herf on ...
The thesis of the dialectic of enlightenment obscured this historical uniqueness. As a "critical theory," it is strangely apologetic in regard to modern ...
www.autodidactproject.org/ quote/ herf1.html

Max Horkheimer -- Philosophy Books and Online Resources
The second stage, starting in 1944 and the joint publication (with Adorno) of "Dialectic of Enlightenment" (Horkheimer und Adorno 1988), ...
www.erraticimpact.com/ ~20thcentury/ html/ horkheimer.htm

Avoiding "Embarrassment": Aesthetic Reason and Aporetic Critique ...
Avoiding "Embarrassment": Aesthetic Reason and Aporetic Critique in Dialectic of Enlightenment. Journal article by Morton Schoolman; Polity, Vol. 37, 2005 ...
www.questia.com/ PM.qst?a=o& se=gglsc& d=5009925443

Dialectic of Enlightenment -- Max Horkheimer Theodor W. Adorno ...
Dialectic of Enlightenment is undoubtedly the most influential publication of the Frankfurt School of Critical Theory. Written during the Second World War ...
www.frontlist.com/ detail/ 0804736332

About the author (2002)

Max Horkheimer and Theodor W. Adorno were two influential members of the Frankfurt School of Critical Theory.

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