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By Theodor W. Adorno, Christoph Ziermann

ISBN-10: 0745693113

ISBN-13: 9780745693118

This quantity includes Adorno?s first lectures in particular devoted to the topic of the dialectic, an idea which has been key to philosophical debate considering that classical instances. whereas discussing connections with Plato and Kant, Adorno concentrates at the so much systematic improvement of the dialectic in Hegel's philosophy, and its courting to Marx, in addition to elaborating his personal notion of dialectical pondering as a severe reaction to this tradition.

Delivered in the summertime semester of 1958, those lectures permit Adorno to discover and probe the numerous problems and demanding situations this manner of considering posed in the cultural and highbrow context of the post-war interval. during this connection he develops the thesis of a complementary courting among positivist or functionalist techniques, really within the social sciences, in addition to calling for the renewal of ontological and metaphysical modes of proposal which try and go beyond the abstractness of contemporary social event by way of entice regressive philosophical different types. whereas delivering an account of many significant issues of Hegelian suggestion, he additionally alludes to a complete diversity of different philosophical, literary and creative figures of important value to his belief of severe idea, particularly Walter Benjamin and the belief of a constellation of options because the version for an 'open or fractured dialectic' past the limitations of approach and system.

These lectures are professional with vigorous anecdotes and private memories which enable the reader to glimpse what has been defined because the 'workshop' of Adorno?s suggestion. As such, they supply an excellent access element for all scholars and students within the humanities and social sciences who're attracted to Adorno?s paintings in addition to these trying to comprehend the character of dialectical thinking.

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Heidegger, Holzwege, Frankfurt am Main, 1950, pp. 105-92; Off the Beaten Track, ed. and trans. Julian Young and Kenneth Hayes, Cambridge, 2002, pp. 86-156). In this connection Adorno may have been thinking of Walter Brocker (1902- 1992), professor of philosophy in Kiel, who had published his book Dialektik, Positivismus, Mythologie (Frankfurt am Main, 1958) in the same year that Adorno delivered these lectures on the dialectic. In a later (as yet unpublished) lecture on questions concerned with the dialectic from 1964, Adorno explicitly refers to Brocker's book, which he thought only rendered the dialectic subservient to ontology (see Theodor W.

IV: 1 950-1 969, ed. Christoph Godde and Henri Lonitz, Frankfurt am Main, 2006, p. 396 ) . The quotation reads as follows : ' . . this "unfinishedness" [ Unfertigsein] of the human being is a basic part of his physical condition, his very nature. ' See Arnold Gehlen, Der Mensch, 4th edn, Bonn, 19SO, p . so; Man : His Nature and Place in the World, trans. Clare McMillan and Karl Pillemer, New York, 1988, pp . 24-s [translation slightly altered] . 10 See Adorno's rather famous aphorism from Minima Moralia : 'The whole is the false' (GS 4, p.

Thus if up to this point all human beings in the past have died, and you extrapolate from this that human beings are mortal, you are not yet justified in purely logical terms in concluding that human beings in every case will actually die, since it is at least possible that one will fail to do so. But if there were something about the principle of the human being which ensured our mortality, we could be relieved of this difficulty and could confidently affirm such a claim as purely a priori. The traditional conception of system is precisely one which involves strict derivation from a single specific principle, and in that sense it represents the opposite of what I said at the start about Hegelian philosophy.

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An Introduction to Dialectics by Theodor W. Adorno, Christoph Ziermann


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