AN INTRODUCTION TO DIALECTICS

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An Introduction To Dialectics

Author : Theodor W. Adorno
ISBN : 9780745694894
Genre : Philosophy
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This volume comprises Adorno?s first lectures specifically dedicated to the subject of the dialectic, a concept which has been key to philosophical debate since classical times. While discussing connections with Plato and Kant, Adorno concentrates on the most systematic development of the dialectic in Hegel's philosophy, and its relationship to Marx, as well as elaborating his own conception of dialectical thinking as a critical response to this tradition. Delivered in the summer semester of 1958, these lectures allow Adorno to explore and probe the significant difficulties and challenges this way of thinking posed within the cultural and intellectual context of the post-war period. In this connection he develops the thesis of a complementary relationship between positivist or functionalist approaches, particularly in the social sciences, as well as calling for the renewal of ontological and metaphysical modes of thought which attempt to transcend the abstractness of modern social experience by appeal to regressive philosophical categories. While providing an account of many central themes of Hegelian thought, he also alludes to a whole range of other philosophical, literary and artistic figures of central importance to his conception of critical theory, notably Walter Benjamin and the idea of a constellation of concepts as the model for an 'open or fractured dialectic' beyond the constraints of method and system. These lectures are seasoned with lively anecdotes and personal recollections which allow the reader to glimpse what has been described as the 'workshop' of Adorno?s thought. As such, they provide an ideal entry point for all students and scholars in the humanities and social sciences who are interested in Adorno?s work as well as those seeking to understand the nature of dialectical thinking.
Category: Philosophy

The Nature Of Human Brain Work

Author : Joseph Dietzgen
ISBN : 9781604863796
Genre : Political Science
File Size : 59.89 MB
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This primer on dialectical materialism is the first and best-known work of a pioneer of socialist philosophy. Joseph Dietzgen, a tanner by trade, was self-taught and developed his theory of dialectical materialism independently of Karl Marx. In this book he argues that thinking is a process involving two opposing aspects—generalization and specialization—and all thought is therefore a dialectical process. Knowledge is limited, truth is relative, and the only absolute is existence itself. This cornerstone of socialist philosophy lays the foundation for a nondogmatic, flexible, nonsectarian yet principled socialist politics.
Category: Political Science

Lectures On Negative Dialectics

Author : Theodor W. Adorno
ISBN : 9780745694573
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 55.56 MB
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This volume comprises one of the key lecture courses leading up to the publication in 1966 of Adorno's major work, Negative Dialectics. These lectures focus on developing the concepts critical to the introductory section of that book. They show Adorno as an embattled philosopher defining his own methodology among the prevailing trends of the time. As a critical theorist, he repudiated the worn-out Marxist stereotypes still dominant in the Soviet bloc – he specifically addresses his remarks to students who had escaped from the East in the period leading up to the building of the Berlin Wall in 1961. Influenced as he was by the empirical schools of thought he had encountered in the United States, he nevertheless continued to resist what he saw as their surrender to scientific and mathematical abstraction. However, their influence was potent enough to prevent him from reverting to the traditional idealisms still prevalent in Germany, or to their latest manifestations in the shape of the new ontology of Heidegger and his disciples. Instead, he attempts to define, perhaps more simply and fully than in the final published version, a ‘negative', i.e. critical, approach to philosophy. Permeating the whole book is Adorno’s sense of the overwhelming power of totalizing, dominating systems in the post-Auschwitz world. Intellectual negativity, therefore, commits him to the stubborn defence of individuals – both facts and people – who stubbornly refuse to become integrated into ‘the administered world’. These lectures reveal Adorno to be a lively and engaging lecturer. He makes serious demands on his listeners but always manages to enliven his arguments with observations on philosophers and writers such as Proust and Brecht and comments on current events. Heavy intellectual artillery is combined with a concern for his students’ progress.
Category: Philosophy

Negative Dialectics

Author : Theodor Adorno
ISBN : 9781134940837
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 23.88 MB
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This is the first British paperback edition of this modern classic written by one of the towering intellectual of the twentieth century. Theodor Adorno (1903-69) was a leading member of the Frankfurt School. His books include The Jargon of Authenticity, Dialectic of Enlightenment (with Max Horkheimer), and Aesthetic Theory
Category: Social Science

Dialectics For The New Century

Author : B. Ollman
ISBN : 9780230583818
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 36.69 MB
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This anthology contains some of the more important Marxist thinkers now working on dialectics. As a whole the book is an unusual 'Introduction to Dialectics', a systematic restatement of what it is and how to use it, a survey of most of the main debates in the field, and a good picture of the current state of the art of dialectics.
Category: Philosophy

Dialectic Of Enlightenment

Author : Max Horkheimer
ISBN : 9780804788090
Genre : Social Science
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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.
Category: Social Science

Dialectical Materialism

Author : Henri Lefebvre
ISBN : 9780816656189
Genre : Social Science
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"Originally published in French as Le materialisme dialectique."
Category: Social Science

Theodor W Adorno

Author : Gerhard Schweppenhäuser
ISBN : 9780822390725
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 20.48 MB
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Theodor W. Adorno (1903–1969) was one of the twentieth century’s most important thinkers. In light of two pivotal developments—the rise of fascism, which culminated in the Holocaust, and the standardization of popular culture as a commodity indispensable to contemporary capitalism—Adorno sought to evaluate and synthesize the essential insights of Western philosophy by revisiting the ethical and sociological arguments of his predecessors: Kant, Nietzsche, Hegel, and Marx. This book, first published in Germany in 1996, provides a succinct introduction to Adorno’s challenging and far-reaching thought. Gerhard Schweppenhäuser, a leading authority on the Frankfurt School of critical theory, explains Adorno’s epistemology, social and political philosophy, aesthetics, and theory of culture. After providing a brief overview of Adorno’s life, Schweppenhäuser turns to the theorist’s core philosophical concepts, including post-Kantian critique, determinate negation, and the primacy of the object, as well as his view of the Enlightenment as a code for world domination, his diagnosis of modern mass culture as a program of social control, and his understanding of modernist aesthetics as a challenge to conceive an alternative politics. Along the way, Schweppenhäuser illuminates the works widely considered Adorno’s most important achievements: Minima Moralia, Dialectic of Enlightenment (co-authored with Horkheimer), and Negative Dialectics. Adorno wrote much of the first two of these during his years in California (1938–49), where he lived near Arnold Schoenberg and Thomas Mann, whom he assisted with the musical aesthetics at the center of Mann’s novel Doctor Faustus.
Category: Philosophy