From: Rakesh Bhandari (email@example.com)
Date: Tue Nov 12 2002 - 21:19:32 EST
>Re : > >A fuller excerpt from Adorno on the 'organic composition of man' is at: > ><http://homepages.tesco.net/~theatre/tezzaland/webstuff/AdornoPres.html>http://homepages.tesco.net/~theatre/tezzaland/webstuff/AdornoPres.html > >Quotation begins: "The organic composition of man is growing." > >The original source is his 1951 book _Minima Moralia: Reflections >From a Damaged Life_ (London, Verso, 1974, pp. 229-230). > >In solidarity, Jerry > A few years ago the following book on Adorno by a Harvard Professor of Medicine was recommended to me; it is indeed lucid and excellent, and I fear that it has been unduly neglected because it is unpretentious and because the author seemingly comes from outside the disciplines of literature and philosophy (though this book is his Yale philosophy dissertation). At any rate, Krakauer's writing has that same capacity as John Holloway's work to make Frankfurt School philosophy a living, earthly, engaging and unpretentious critique. In my opinion, a new student would become more engaged in critical theory by either of these books than, say, Seyla Benhabib's tight but overly formal Critique, Norm and Utopia or Stephen Eric Bronner's brilliantly succinct but also formal Of Critical Theory and Its Theorists. Of course Krakauer's Adorno is ultimately simply outside the Marxian system while John's critique develops immanently out of Marx's work and the contradictions between positivism and criticism therein (of course John has non Marxist sources of inspiration--for example, the great Linton Kwesi Johnson and above all the Zapatistas ) . I am much more convinced by John's development of critical theory than Krakauer's. Also: While Krakauer turns Adorno against Benjamin, I was left hoping that someone would turn Benjamin against Adorno... The Disposition of the Subject: Reading Adorno's Dialectic of Technology Eric L. Krakauer ABOUT THE BOOK From The Publisher The unprecedented mass manipulation, mass death, and trauma of World War II created a heightened interest in technology and totalitarianism among European and American intellectuals. In The Disposition of the Subject, Eric Krakauer explores Theodor Adorno's attempt to hinder further atrocity through philosophical analysis of technology and of its contribution to totalitarianisms of various kinds: political, aesthetic, and epistemological. Starting with an elucidation of Adorno's discovery of a dark side to the Enlightenment, of its culmination in totalitarian thinking, and of the central role of the technologies of the culture industry in this process, Krakauer examines Adorno's "negative dialectical" critique and situates Adorno's work in relation to Hegel, Marx, Benjamin, and Heidegger. Arguing that Adorno's method is a type of reading that reveals itself most clearly in Adorno's texts on aesthetics, language, and foreign words, Krakauer finds in Adorno's writing a complex, nondialectical differentiating that radically threatens totalitarianisms, gives Adorno's work an affinity to that of Derrida and de Man, and sheds new light on the relationship among philosophy, subjectivity, trauma, and social suffering.
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