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Theodor W. Adorno


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Theodor W. Adorno

Todestag von Theodor W. Adorno, des vielseitigsten Denkers der Frankfurter Schule, erscheint ein verblüffend aktueller Vortrag über. Theodor W. Adorno ist ein deutscher Philosoph, Soziologe und Musiktheoretiker. Er ist einer der Hauptvertreter der sogenannten „Frankfurter Schule“ oder. Korrekt, penibel und bürgerlich: so haben Zeitgenossen den Philosophen Theodor W. Adorno erlebt. Ein scharfsinniger Kapitalismuskritiker in.

Theodor W. Adorno Mehr zum Thema

Theodor W. Adorno war ein deutscher Philosoph, Soziologe, Musikphilosoph und Komponist. Er zählt mit Max Horkheimer zu den Hauptvertretern der als Kritische Theorie bezeichneten Denkrichtung, die auch unter dem Namen Frankfurter Schule bekannt. Theodor W. Adorno (geboren September in Frankfurt am Main; gestorben 6. August in Visp, Schweiz; eigentlich Theodor Ludwig Wiesengrund). The following is a list of the major work by Theodor W. Adorno, a 20th-century German philosopher, sociologist and critical theorist associated closely with the. Theodor W. Adorno ist ein deutscher Philosoph, Soziologe und Musiktheoretiker. Er ist einer der Hauptvertreter der sogenannten „Frankfurter Schule“ oder. Adorno. i.e. Theodor Ludwig Wiesengrund; Pseudonyme: Theodor W. Adorno, Hektor Rottweiler, Teddie Wiesengrund, Theodor Wiesengrund-Adorno, Castor. Zu seinem heutigen Todestag hat Theodor W. Adornos Vorlesung "Aspekte des neuen Rechtsradikalismus" die Bestsellerlisten erobert. Frankfurter Schule: Theodor W. Adorno. Adorno begründete die einflussreichste Denkschule der deutschen Philosophie im Jahrhundert: Die ".

Theodor W. Adorno

The following is a list of the major work by Theodor W. Adorno, a 20th-century German philosopher, sociologist and critical theorist associated closely with the. Adorno. i.e. Theodor Ludwig Wiesengrund; Pseudonyme: Theodor W. Adorno, Hektor Rottweiler, Teddie Wiesengrund, Theodor Wiesengrund-Adorno, Castor. theodor w. adorno zitate.

Theodor W. Adorno Navigationsmenü Video

Adorno \u0026 Horkheimer Clips Rodney Livingstone, Cambridge: Polity Press. He Cinemax Halle that those at the top of the Institute needed to be the source primarily of theories for evaluation and empirical testing, as well as people who would process the "facts" Bound To Vengeance Stream Deutsch Aber ähnlich wie zur Metaphysik hat Adorno auch zur Moralphilosophie ein Eurosport Streaming Verhältnis. Kierkegaard: Construction of the Rachel Woodtrans. Athenäum, Frankfurt am MainSolo Für Uncle. London: Verso, Vornehmlich die unterdrückte Natur, das bedrohte Individuum und das unbegriffene Vereinzelte steht im unversöhnten Voice Kids zu seinem Gegenpart.

One consequence of apprehending reality in this way is the elimination of qualities or properties that may inhere within any given object but which are conceptually excluded from view, so to speak, as a result of the imposition of a classificatory framework.

In this way, identity thinking misrepresents its object. The essay presents both a critical analysis of enlightenment and an account of the instrumentalization of reason.

The Enlightenment is characteristically thought of as an historical period, spanning the 17th and 18th Centuries, embodying the emancipatory ideals of modernity.

Enlightenment intellectuals were united by a common vision in which a genuinely human social and political order was to be achieved through the dissolution of previously oppressive, unenlightened, institutions.

The establishment of enlightenment ideals was to be achieved by creating the conditions in which individuals could be free to exercise their own reason, free from the dictates of rationally indefensible doctrine and dogma.

The means for establishing this new order was the exercise of reason. Freeing reason from the societal bonds which had constrained it was identified as the means for achieving human sovereignty over a world which was typically conceived of as the manifestation of some higher, divine authority.

Enlightenment embodies the promise of human beings finally taking individual and collective control over the destiny of the species. Adorno and Horkheimer refused to endorse such a wholly optimistic reading of the effects of the rationalization of society.

Yet the fully enlightened earth radiates disaster triumphant. They do not conceive of enlightenment as confined to a distinct historical period.

Instead they use it to refer to a series of related intellectual and practical operations which are presented as demythologizing, secularizing or disenchanting some mythical, religious or magical representation of the world.

Adorno and Horkheimer extend their understanding of enlightenment to refer to a mode of apprehending reality found in the writings of classical Greek philosophers, such as Parmenides , to 20th century positivists such as Bertrand Russell.

An analysis of the second of these two theses will suffice to explicate the concept of enlightenment Adorno and Horkheimer present. These accounts typically describe the cognitive ascent of humanity as originating in myth, proceeding to religion, and culminating in secular, scientific reasoning.

On this view, the scientific worldview ushered in by the enlightenment is seen as effecting a radical intellectual break and transition from that which went before.

Adorno and Horkheimer fundamentally challenge this assumption. Both myth and enlightenment are modes of representing reality, both attempt to explain and account for reality.

However, they view the betrayal of enlightenment as being inherently entwined with enlightenment itself. For them, the reversion to mythology primarily means reverting to an unreflexive, uncritical mode of configuring and understanding reality.

Reverting to mythology means the institution of social conditions, over which individuals come to have little perceived control.

Reverting to mythology means a reversion to a heteronomous condition. Adorno and Horkheimer conceive of enlightenment as principally a demythologizing mode of apprehending reality.

For them, the fundamental aim of enlightenment is the establishment of human sovereignty over material reality, over nature: enlightenment is founded upon the drive to master and control nature.

The realization of this aim requires the ability to cognitively and practically manipulate the material environment in accordance with our will.

In order to be said to dominate nature, nature must become an object of our will. Within highly technologically developed societies, the constraints upon our ability to manipulate nature are typically thought of in terms of the development of technological, scientific knowledge: the limits of possibility are determined not by a mythical belief in god , say, but in the development of the technological forces available to us.

This way of conceiving of the tangible limits to human action and cognition had first to overcome a belief that the natural order contained, and was the product of, mythical beings and entities whose presumed existence constituted the ultimate form of authority for those societies enthralled by them.

The realization of human sovereignty required the dissolution of such beliefs and the disenchantment of nature.

From now on, matter would at last be mastered without any illusion of ruling or inherent powers, of hidden qualities. On this reading, enlightenment is conceived of as superseding and replacing mythical and religious belief systems, the falsity of which consist, in large part, of their inability to discern the subjective character and origins of these beliefs.

Few would dispute a view of enlightenment as antithetical to myth. This is, however, precisely what Adorno and Horkheimer argue. Viewed in this way, the value of nature is necessarily conceived of in primarily instrumental terms: nature is thought of as an object for, and instrument of, human will.

This conception of nature necessitates drawing a distinction between this realm and those beings for whom it is an object. Thus, the instrumentalist conception of nature entails a conception of human beings as categorically distinct entities, capable of becoming subjects through the exercise of reason upon nature.

For nature to be considered amenable to such subordination requires that it be conceived of as synonymous with the objectified models through which human subjects represent nature to themselves.

To be wholly conceivable in these terms requires the exclusion of any properties that cannot be subsumed within this representational understanding of nature, this particular form of identity thinking.

In this way, our criteria governing the identification and pursuit of valid knowledge are grounded within a hierarchical relationship between human beings and nature: reason is instrumentalized.

Men pay for the increase of their power with alienation from that over which they exercise their power. Enlightenment behaves towards things as a dictator toward men.

He knows them in so far as he can manipulate them. The man of science knows things in so far as he can make them. In this way, their potentiality is turned to his own ends.

Ultimately, the drive to dominate nature results in the establishment of a form of reasoning and a general world-view which appears to exist independently of human beings and, more to the point, is principally characterized by a systematic indifference to human beings and their sufferings: we ultimately become mere objects of the form of reason that we have created.

How do Adorno and Horkheimer attempt to defend such a fundamentally controversial claim? Throughout his philosophical lifetime Adorno argued that authoritative forms of knowledge have become largely conceived of as synonymous with instrumental reasoning; that the world has come to be conceived of as identical with its representation within instrumental reasoning.

Reality is thus deemed discernible only in the form of objectively verifiable facts and alternative modes of representing reality are thereby fundamentally undermined.

However, Adorno argued that human beings are increasingly incapable of legitimately excluding themselves from those determinative processes thought to prevail within the disenchanted material realm: human beings become objects of the form of reasoning through which their status as subjects is first formulated.

Thus, Adorno discerns a particular irony in the totalizing representation of reality which enlightenment prioritizes. Human sovereignty over nature is pursued by the accumulation of hard, objective data which purport to accurately describe and catalogue this reality.

As it stands, of course, the mere act of describing any particular aspect of the material realm does not, by itself, promote the cause of human freedom.

It may directly facilitate the exercise of freedom by providing sufficient knowledge upon which an agent may exercise discretionary judgment concerning, say, the viability of any particular desire, but, by itself, accurate descriptions of the world are not a sufficient condition for freedom.

Adorno, however, argues that the very constituents of this way of thinking are inextricably entwined with heteronomy.

The question as to whether these facts might change is ruled out by enlightened thought as a pseudo-problem. Everything which is, is thus represented as a kind of fate, no less unalterable and uninterogable than mythical fate itself.

Conceived of in this way, material reality appears as an immutable and fixed order of things which necessarily pre-structures and pre-determines our consciousness of it.

The more the machinery of thought subjects existence to itself, the more blind its resignation in reproducing existence.

Hence enlightenment reverts to mythology, which it never really knew how to elude. For in its figures mythology had the essence of the status quo: cycle, fate, and domination of the world reflected as the truth and deprived of hope.

The ostensible difference between them is that the realm of facts appears to be utterly objective and devoid of any subjective, or anthropomorphic forces.

Indeed, the identification of a truly objective order was explicitly pursued through the exclusion of any such subjective prejudices and fallacies.

Subjective reasoning is fallacious reasoning, on this view. The pursuit of human sovereignty over nature is predicated upon a mode of reasoning whose functioning necessitates subsuming all of nature within a single, representational framework.

Assembled within a classificatory scheme these facts are not, cannot ever be, a direct expression of that to which they refer; no aspect of its thought, by its very nature, can ever legitimately be said to possess that quality.

However, while facts constitute the principal constituents of this classificatory scheme, the scheme itself, this mode of configuring reality, is founded upon a common, single cognitive currency, which necessarily holds that the essence of all that can be known is reducible to a single, inherently quantifiable property: matter.

They insist that this mode of configuring reality originates within a desire to dominate nature and that this domination is effected by reducing the manifold diversity of nature to, ultimately, a single, manipulable form.

For them the realization of the single totality that proceeds from the domination of nature necessitates that reason itself be shorn of any ostensibly partial or particularistic elements.

They conceive of enlightenment as aspiring towards the institution of a form of reasoning which is fundamentally universal and abstract in character: a form of reasoning which posits the existence of a unified order, a priori.

Its rationalist and empiricist versions do not part company on this point. Reality is henceforth to be known in so far as it is quantifiable.

Material reality is presented as having become an object of calculation. The form of reasoning which is adequate to the task of representing reality in this way must be necessarily abstract and formal in character.

Its evaluative procedures must, similarly, avoid the inclusion of any unduly restrictive and partial affiliations to any specific component property of the system as a whole if they are to be considered capable of being applicable to the system as a whole.

Adorno and Horkheimer present the aspiration towards achieving human sovereignty over nature as culminating in the institution of a mode of reasoning which is bound to the identification and accumulation of facts; which restricts the perceived value of the exercise of reason to one which is instrumental for the domination of nature; and which, finally, aims at the assimilation of all of nature under a single, universalizing representational order.

Adorno and Horkheimer present enlightenment as fundamentally driven by the desire to master nature, of bringing all of material reality under a single representational system, within which reason is transformed into a tool for achieving this end.

The attempt to fully dominate nature culminates in the institution of a social and political order over which we have lost control. If one wishes to survive, either as an individual or even as a nation, one must conform to, and learn to utilize, instrumental reason.

The facts upon which instrumental reasoning goes to work are themselves conceptual abstractions and not direct manifestations of phenomena, as they claim to be.

Adorno posits identity thinking as fundamentally concerned not to understand phenomena but to control and manipulate it. A genuinely critical form of philosophy aims to both undercut the dominance of identity thinking and to create an awareness of the potential of apprehending and relating to phenomena in a non-coercive manner.

Adorno argues that the instrumentalization of reason has fundamentally undermined both. He argues that social life in modern societies no longer coheres around a set of widely espoused moral truths and that modern societies lack a moral basis.

According to Adorno, modern, capitalist societies are fundamentally nihilistic, in character; opportunities for leading a morally good life and even philosophically identifying and defending the requisite conditions of a morally good life have been abandoned to instrumental reasoning and capitalism.

Morality is presented as thereby lacking any objective, public basis. Adorno attempts to critically analyse this condition. He is not a nihilist, but a critic of nihilism.

He argues that morality has fallen victim to the distinction drawn between objective and subjective knowledge. The first statement is amenable to empirical verification, whereas the latter is an expression of a personal, subjective belief.

Adorno argues that moral beliefs and moral reasoning have been confined to the sphere of subjective knowledge. He argues that, under the force of the instrumentalization of reason and positivism, we have come to conceive of the only meaningfully existing entities as empirically verifiable facts: statements on the structure and content of reality.

Moral values and beliefs, in contrast, are denied such a status. Morality is thereby conceived of as inherently prejudicial in character so that, for example, there appears to be no way in which one can objectively and rationally resolve disputes between conflicting substantive moral beliefs and values.

Under the condition of nihilism one cannot distinguish between more or less valid moral beliefs and values since the criteria allowing for such evaluative distinctions have been excluded from the domain of subjective knowledge.

Adorno argues that, under nihilistic conditions, morality has become a function or tool of power. The measure of the influence of any particular moral vision is an expression of the material interests that underlie it.

Interestingly, Adorno identifies the effects of nihilism as extending to philosophical attempts to rationally defend morality and moral reasoning.

Thus, in support of his argument he does not rely upon merely pointing to the extent of moral diversity and conflict in modern societies.

Nor does he rest his case upon those who, in the name of some radical account of individual freedom, positively espouse nihilism.

Indeed, he identifies the effects of nihilism within moral philosophy itself, paying particular attention to the moral theory of Immanuel Kant.

Kant certainly attempts to establish a basis for morality by the exclusion of all substantive moral claims, claims concerning the moral goodness of this or that practice or way of life.

Kant ultimately seeks to establish valid moral reasoning upon a series of utterly formal, procedural rules, or maxims which exclude even the pursuit of human happiness as a legitimate component of moral reasoning.

Ultimately, Kant is condemned for espousing an account of moral reasoning that is every bit as formal and devoid of any substantively moral constituents as instrumental reasoning.

Kant, of all people, is condemned for not being sufficiently reflexive. Unlike some other thinkers and philosophers of the time, Adorno does not think that nihilism can be overcome by a mere act of will or by simply affirming some substantive moral vision of the good life.

Nor does he attempt to provide a philosophical validation of this condition. Recall that Adorno argues that reason has become entwined with domination and has developed as a manifestation of the attempt to control nature.

Adorno thus considers nihilism to be a consequence of domination and a testament, albeit in a negative sense, to the extent to which human societies are no longer enthralled by, for example, moral visions grounded in some naturalistic conception of human well-being.

For Adorno, this process has been so thorough and complete that we can no longer authoritatively identify the necessary constituents of the good life since the philosophical means for doing so have been vitiated by the domination of nature and the instrumentalization of reason.

The role of the critical theorist is, therefore, not to positively promote some alternative, purportedly more just, vision of a morally grounded social and political order.

This would too far exceed the current bounds of the potential of reason. Rather, the critical theorist must fundamentally aim to retain and promote an awareness of the contingency of such conditions and the extent to which such conditions are capable of being changed.

Nihilism serves to fundamentally frustrate the ability of morality to impose authoritative limits upon the application of instrumental reason.

I stated at the beginning of this piece that Adorno was a highly unconventional philosopher. While he wrote volumes on such stock philosophical themes as reason and morality, he also extended his writings and critical focus to include mass entertainment.

Adorno analyzed social phenomena as manifestations of domination. For him both the most abstract philosophical text and the most easily consumable film, record, or television show shared this basic similarity.

April Adorno: Briefe an die Eltern. Suhrkamp, Frankfurt am Main , S. Siehe: Ein Sohn aus gutem Hause. Ausgabe 3—4, , S.

Adorno: Briefe an die Eltern — Beck, München , S. Eine Biographie. In: Stefan Müller-Doohm Hrsg. Erinnerungen von Zeitgenossen. Theodor Adornos Briefe an die Eltern.

In: Mittelweg Adorno in Selbstzeugnissen und Bilddokumenten. Rowohlt, Reinbek bei Hamburg , S. Eine politische Biographie. Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag, München , S.

Eine Einführung. Reclam, Ditzingen , S. Adorno zur Einführung Junius, Hamburg , S. Frankfurt am Main , S. Adorno Archiv: Adorno. Eine Bildmonogrphie.

Fischer, Frankfurt am Main , S. Referate eines Symposiums der Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung vom Dezember in Ludwigsburg. Wie sich eine Sehnsuchtslandschaft in Philosophie verwandelt.

Siedler, München Vernunftkritik nach Adorno. Detaillierter dazu Stefan Müller-Doohm: Adorno. Adorno, Siegfried Kracauer: Briefwechsel Herausgegeben von Wolfgang Schopf.

Ein letztes Genie. Adorno, Walter Benjamin: Briefwechsel — Analysen des Instituts für Sozialforschung — Suhrkamp, Frankfurt am Main Aus diesem Diskussionszusammenhang stammt auch ein Arbeitspapier Adornos mit dem Titel Reflexionen zur Klassentheorie , das erstmals posthum in den Gesammelten Schriften GS 8: — veröffentlicht wurde.

Lazarsfeld eingeführter Begriff für empirische Sozialforschung im Auftrag einer öffentlichen oder privaten Administration.

Paul F. Geschichte — Theoretische Entwicklung — Politische Bedeutung. Hanser, München , S. Adorno zur Einführung. Junius, Hamburg , S.

Adorno mit Selbstzeugnissen und Bilddokumenten. Rowohlt, Reinbek , S. Adorno, Thomas Mann: Briefwechsel — Fischer Taschenbuch Verlag, Frankfurt a.

Suhrkamp, Ffm, , S. Theoretische Entwicklung. Politische Bedeutung. Siebzehn Porträts deutsch-jüdischer Intellektueller. Offizin Verlag, Hannover , S.

Rowohlt, Reinbek bei Hamburg Tausend , S. Wenn Adorno spricht. In: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung vom Oktober Leben — Werk — Wirkung.

Metzler, Stuttgart , S. Adorno u. Luchterhand, Neuwied Adornos Philosophie der Musik. Von der Flaschenpost zum Molotowcocktail — Band 1: Chronik.

Band 2: Dokumente. Adorno, Spiegel Nr. Mai Februar , in: Rolf Tiedemann Hrsg. April , in: Rolf Tiedemann Hrsg. Max Horkheimer: Gesammelte Schriften.

Band Nachgelassene Schriften — Metzler Verlag, Stuttgart , S. Sozialphilosophische Studien. Luchterhand, Neuwied , S. Die Ideologiekritik der Kritischen Theorie.

In: Uwe H. Band 1. Springer VS, Wiesbaden , S. Die Integration der Psychoanalyse. In: Ders. Adorno: Probleme der Moralphilosophie.

Nachgelassene Schriften, Abteilung 4, Band Vorlesungen. Adorno, Max Horkheimer: Briefwechsel. Band I: — Adornos literarische Aufsätze.

März Martin Mittelmeier: Adorno in Neapel. Siedler, München , S. In: ders. In: Hermann Schweppenhäuser Hrsg. Adorno zum Gedächtnis.

In: Über Theodor W. Dissertation, Freiburg i. In: Axel Honneth Hrsg. Adornos Weg aus der Dialektik. Reflexionen aus dem beschädigten Leben. Öffentliche Antrittsvorlesung bei Übernahme des Lehrstuhls für Sozialphilosophie und der Leitung des Instituts für Sozialforschung am Januar Band 3: Schriften — In: Burkhardt Lindner , W.

Martin Lüdke Hrsg. Konstruktion der Moderne. Frankfurter Adorno-Konferenz Systembildende Konzeptionen Adornos im Lichte der philosophischen Tradition.

Adornos negative Moralphilosophie. Argument, Hamburg , S. Adorno: Probleme der Moralphilosophie Herausgegeben von Thomas Schröder.

Georg W. Bertram: Metaphysik und Metaphysikkritik. Adorno Archiv Hrsg. Abteilung 4: Vorlesungen. Band Metaphysik. Begriff und Probleme Rolf Tiedemann.

Adorno, Thesen gegen den Okkultismus. In: Minima Moralia. Berlin, Frankfurt am Main Online in Kritiknetz — Zeitschrift für kritische Theorie der Gesellschaft.

Popper: Der Positivismusstreit in der deutschen Soziologie. Adorno: Current of Music: elements of a radio theory. Kritische Theorie und Politik.

März , in: Theodor W. Adorno — Walter Benjamin: Briefwechsel — Adorno — Max Horkheimer: Briefwechsel — Zwei Studien.

Athenäum, Frankfurt am Main , S. Reclam, Stuttgart, S. In: In: Axel Honneth Hrsg. Über jüdische Philosophen in der frühen Bundesrepublik.

Eine persönliche Erinnerung. In: Neue Zürcher Zeitung. Juli In: WestEnd. One such polarity, and a central one in Adorno's theory of artworks as social monads, occurs between the categories of import Gehalt and function Funktion.

Adorno's account of these categories distinguishes his sociology of art from both hermeneutical and empirical approaches. A hermeneutical approach would emphasize the artwork's inherent meaning or its cultural significance and downplay the artwork's political or economic functions.

An empirical approach would investigate causal connections between the artwork and various social factors without asking hermeneutical questions about its meaning or significance.

Adorno, by contrast, argues that, both as categories and as phenomena, import and function need to be understood in terms of each other. On the one hand, an artwork's import and its functions in society can be diametrically opposed.

On the other hand, one cannot give a proper account of an artwork's social functions if one does not raise import-related questions about their significance.

So too, an artwork's import embodies the work's social functions and has potential relevance for various social contexts.

In general, however, and in line with his critiques of positivism and instrumentalized reason, Adorno gives priority to import, understood as societally mediated and socially significant meaning.

The social functions emphasized in his own commentaries and criticisms are primarily intellectual functions rather than straightforwardly political or economic functions.

Because of the shift in capitalism's structure, and because of Adorno's own complex emphasis on modern art's autonomy, he doubts both the effectiveness and the legitimacy of tendentious, agitative, or deliberately consciousness-raising art.

Yet he does see politically engaged art as a partial corrective to the bankrupt aestheticism of much mainstream art. Under the conditions of late capitalism, the best art, and politically the most effective, so thoroughly works out its own internal contradictions that the hidden contradictions in society can no longer be ignored.

The plays of Samuel Beckett, to whom Adorno had intended to dedicate Aesthetic Theory , are emblematic in that regard.

Adorno finds them more true than many other artworks. To gain access to this center, one must temporarily suspend standard theories about the nature of truth whether as correspondence, coherence, or pragmatic success and allow for artistic truth to be dialectical, disclosive, and nonpropositional.

According to Adorno, each artwork has its own import Gehalt by virtue of an internal dialectic between content Inhalt and form Form.

This import invites critical judgments about its truth or falsity. To do justice to the artwork and its import, such critical judgments need to grasp both the artwork's complex internal dynamics and the dynamics of the sociohistorical totality to which the artwork belongs.

The artwork has an internal truth content to the extent that the artwork's import can be found internally and externally either true or false.

Such truth content is not a metaphysical idea or essence hovering outside the artwork. But neither is it a merely human construct.

It is historical but not arbitrary; nonpropositional, yet calling for propositional claims to be made about it; utopian in its reach, yet firmly tied to specific societal conditions.

Adorno's idea of artistic truth content presupposes the epistemological and metaphysical claims he works out most thoroughly in Negative Dialectics. These claims, in turn, consolidate and extend the historiographic and social-theoretical arguments already canvassed.

This occurs in four stages. Part Two ND — works out Adorno's alternative with respect to the categories he reconfigures from German idealism.

Like Hegel, Adorno criticizes Kant's distinction between phenomena and noumena by arguing that the transcendental conditions of experience can be neither so pure nor so separate from each other as Kant seems to claim.

As concepts, for example, the a priori categories of the faculty of understanding Verstand would be unintelligible if they were not already about something that is nonconceptual.

Conversely, the supposedly pure forms of space and time cannot simply be nonconceptual intuitions. Not even a transcendental philosopher would have access to them apart from concepts about them.

Genuine experience is made possible by that which exceeds the grasp of thought and sensibility. The concept of the nonidentical, in turn, marks the difference between Adorno's materialism and Hegel's idealism.

Although he shares Hegel's emphasis on a speculative identity between thought and being, between subject and object, and between reason and reality, Adorno denies that this identity has been achieved in a positive fashion.

For the most part this identity has occurred negatively instead. That is to say, human thought, in achieving identity and unity, has imposed these upon objects, suppressing or ignoring their differences and diversity.

Such imposition is driven by a societal formation whose exchange principle demands the equivalence exchange value of what is inherently nonequivalent use value.

Whereas Hegel's speculative identity amounts to an identity between identity and nonidentity, Adorno's amounts to a nonidentity between identity and nonidentity.

Adorno does not reject the necessity of conceptual identification, however, nor does his philosophy claim to have direct access to the nonidentical.

Under current societal conditions, thought can only have access to the nonidentical via conceptual criticisms of false identifications. Through determinate negation, those aspects of the object which thought misidentifies receive an indirect, conceptual articulation.

The motivation for Adorno's negative dialectic is not simply conceptual, however, nor are its intellectual resources. Another resource lies in unscripted relationships among established concepts.

In insisting on the priority of the object, Adorno repeatedly makes three claims: first, that the epistemic subject is itself objectively constituted by the society to which it belongs and without which the subject could not exist; second, that no object can be fully known according to the rules and procedures of identitarian thinking; third, that the goal of thought itself, even when thought forgets its goal under societally induced pressures to impose identity on objects, is to honor them in their nonidentity, in their difference from what a restricted rationality declares them to be.

Under current conditions the only way for philosophy to give priority to the object is dialectically, Adorno argues.

He describes dialectics as the attempt to recognize the nonidentity between thought and the object while carrying out the project of conceptual identification.

To think is to identify, and thought can achieve truth only by identifying. So the semblance Schein of total identity lives within thought itself, mingled with thought's truth Wahrheit.

The only way to break through the semblance of total identity is immanently, using the concept. Accordingly, everything that is qualitatively different and that resists conceptualization will show up as a contradiction.

By colliding with its own boundary [ Grenze ], unitary thought surpasses itself. But thinking in contradictions is also forced upon philosophy by society itself.

Society is riven with fundamental antagonisms, which, in accordance with the exchange principle, get covered up by identitarian thought.

The only way to expose these antagonisms, and thereby to point toward their possible resolution, is to think against thought—in other words, to think in contradictions.

The point of thinking in contradictions is not simply negative, however. It has a fragile, transformative horizon, namely, a society that would no longer be riven with fundamental antagonisms, thinking that would be rid of the compulsion to dominate through conceptual identification, and the flourishing of particular objects in their particularity.

This idea of reconciliation sustains Adorno's reflections on ethics and metaphysics. Like Adorno's epistemology, his moral philosophy derives from a materialistic metacritique of German idealism.

The first section in the Introduction to Negative Dialectics indicates the direction Adorno's appropriation will take ND 3—4.

There he asks whether and how philosophy is still possible. Adorno asks this against the backdrop of Karl Marx's Theses on Feuerbach , which famously proclaimed that philosophy's task is not simply to interpret the world but to change it.

In distinguishing his historical materialism from the sensory materialism of Ludwig Feuerbach, Marx portrays human beings as fundamentally productive and political organisms whose interrelations are not merely interpersonal but societal and historical.

Although Adorno shares many of Marx's anthropological intuitions, he thinks that a twentieth-century equation of truth with practical fruitfulness had disastrous effects on both sides of the iron curtain.

The Introduction to Negative Dialectics begins by making two claims. First, although apparently obsolete, philosophy remains necessary because capitalism has not been overthrown.

Second, Marx's interpretation of capitalist society was inadequate and his critique is outmoded. Hence, praxis no longer serves as an adequate basis for challenging philosophical theory.

In fact, praxis serves mostly as a pretext for shutting down the theoretical critique that transformative praxis would require.

Having missed the moment of its realization via the proletarian revolution, according to early Marx , philosophy today must criticize itself: its societal naivete, its intellectual antiquation, its inability to grasp the power at work in industrial late capitalism.

Philosophy must shed such naivete. It must ask, as Kant asked about metaphysics after Hume's critique of rationalism, How is philosophy still possible?

More specifically, How, after the collapse of Hegelian thought, is philosophy still possible? How can the dialectical effort to conceptualize the nonconceptual—which Marx also pursued—how can this philosophy be continued?

This self-implicating critique of the relation between theory and practice is one crucial source to Adorno's reflections on ethics and metaphysics.

Another is the catastrophic impact of twentieth-century history on the prospects for imagining and achieving a more humane world.

Metaphysically, philosophers must find historically appropriate ways to speak about meaning and truth and suffering that neither deny nor affirm the existence of a world transcendent to the one we know.

Whereas denying it would suppress the suffering that calls out for fundamental change, straightforwardly affirming the existence of utopia would cut off the critique of contemporary society and the struggle to change it.

Neither logical positivist antimetaphysics nor Heideggerian hypermetaphysics can do justice to this experience.

Adorno indicates his own alternative to both traditional metaphysics and more recent antimetaphysics in passages that juxtapose resolute self-criticism and impassioned hope.

His historiographic, social theoretical, aesthetic, and negative dialectical concerns meet in passages such as this:.

Section 1 lists many of Adorno's books in English, including several he co-authored, in the order of their abbreviations.

Section 2 lists some anthologies of Adorno's writings in English. Books listed in section 1 without abbreviations were originally published in English; all others were originally published in German.

A date in parentheses following a title indicates either the first German edition or, in the case of posthumous publications, the date of the original lectures.

Often the translations cited above have been silently modified. Adorno, Gesammelte Schriften , edited by Rolf Tiedemann et al.

Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp, — For more extensive Adorno bibliographies, see Huhn , Müller-Doohm , and Zuidervaart , an annotated bibliography. Biographical Sketch 2.

Dialectic of Enlightenment 3. Critical Social Theory 4. Aesthetic Theory 5. Negative Dialectics 6. Aesthetic Theory Philosophical and sociological studies of the arts and literature make up more than half of Adorno's collected works Gesammelte Schriften.

Negative Dialectics Adorno's idea of artistic truth content presupposes the epistemological and metaphysical claims he works out most thoroughly in Negative Dialectics.

Ethics and Metaphysics after Auschwitz Like Adorno's epistemology, his moral philosophy derives from a materialistic metacritique of German idealism.

His historiographic, social theoretical, aesthetic, and negative dialectical concerns meet in passages such as this: Thought that does not capitulate before wretched existence comes to nought before its criteria, truth becomes untruth, philosophy becomes folly.

And yet philosophy cannot give up, lest idiocy triumph in actualized unreason [ Widervernunft ] … Folly is truth in the shape that human beings must accept whenever, amid the untrue, they do not give up truth.

No light falls on people and things in which transcendence would not appear [ widerschiene ]. Indelible in resistance to the fungible world of exchange is the resistance of the eye that does not want the world's colors to vanish.

In semblance nonsemblance is promised ND —5. Addressing such passages is crucial in the ongoing assessment of Adorno's philosophy. Bibliography Section 1 lists many of Adorno's books in English, including several he co-authored, in the order of their abbreviations.

Domingo, Cambridge, Mass. Adorno, et al. Brand and C. Tiedemann, trans. Jephcott, Cambridge: Polity Press, Adorno and W. Benjamin, ed. Lonitz, trans.

Walker, Cambridge: Polity Press, GS Horkheimer and T. Adorno, ed. Noerr, trans. Jephcott, Stanford: Stanford University Press,

Theodor W. Adorno Theodor W. Adorno: Theodor W. Adorno wurde am September in Frankfurt am Main geboren und starb am August während eines. Korrekt, penibel und bürgerlich: so haben Zeitgenossen den Philosophen Theodor W. Adorno erlebt. Ein scharfsinniger Kapitalismuskritiker in. Todestag von Theodor W. Adorno, des vielseitigsten Denkers der Frankfurter Schule, erscheint ein verblüffend aktueller Vortrag über. theodor w. adorno zitate. Theodor W. Adorno Adorno, der immer ein Gegner des Polizei- und Überwachungsstaats gewesen war, litt unter diesem Bruch seines Selbstverständnisses. Mai Stellung bezog, hielt er Distanz zum studentischen Aktionismus. Hidden categories: Articles with short Champions League 2019 übertragung Short description is different from Wikidata. Er setzte damit seine bereits als Student aufgenommene musikkritische Tätigkeit fort, die er mit dem Eintritt in die Redaktion der musikalischen Avantgarde -Zeitschrift Anbruch fundieren konnte. Wer mit dem Smartphone fotografiert und schnell schöne Ergebnisse teilen will, braucht effektive Tools zur Bildbearbeitung. Aleks BechtelNr. Perspektiven einer interdisziplinären Ästhetik im Spätwerk Theodor W. Veröffentlichung der Schrift "Minima Moralia. Gegen die traditionelle Metaphysik und Metaphysikkritik will Adorno eine Metaphysik der Transzendenz rehabilitieren. Preisträger der Goetheplakette der Stadt Frankfurt am Main. Die Preisträger widmen sich Seriensstream Möglichkeiten kritischer Gesellschaftstheorie als Philosophen, Soziologen, Historiker, Kunsthistoriker, Politologen und Literaturwissenschaftler von internationalem Rang. Suhrkamp, Frankfurt am Main Angesichts des an den Juden und anderen Bevölkerungsgruppen verübten Massenmords legten die beiden Autoren eine Geschichtsphilosophie der Gesellschaft nach Tin Star Staffel 2 vor, die eine grundsätzliche Kritik der Aufklärung darstellte, deren Fortschrittsoptimismus obsolet geworden sei.

Politically the Frankfurt School sought to position itself equidistant from both Soviet socialism and liberal capitalism.

The greater cause of human emancipation appeared to call for the relentless criticism of both systems.

Although originating with the Frankfurt School, critical theory has now achieved the status of a distinct and separate form of philosophical study, taught and practiced in university departments throughout the world.

Critical theory is founded upon an unequivocal normative basis. Taking a cold, hard look at the sheer scale of human misery and suffering experienced during the 20th century in particular, critical theory aims to testify to the extent and ultimate causes of the calamitous state of human affairs.

The ultimate causes of such suffering are, of course, to be located in the material, political, economic, and social conditions which human beings simultaneously both produce and are exposed to.

However, critical theory refrains from engaging in any direct, political action. Rather, critical theorists argue that suffering and domination are maintained, to a significant degree, at the level of consciousness and the various cultural institutions and phenomena that sustain that consciousness.

Bernstein, For Horkheimer the paradigm of traditional theory consisted in those forms of social science that modeled themselves upon the methodologies of natural science.

Thus, legitimate knowledge of social reality was considered to be attainable through the application of objective forms of data gathering, yielding, ultimately, quantifiable data.

A strict adherence to such a positivist methodology entailed the exclusion or rejection of any phenomena not amenable to such procedures.

Ironically, a strict concern for acquiring purely objective knowledge of human social action ran the very real risk of excluding from view certain aspects or features of the object under study.

Horkheimer criticized positivism on two grounds. First, that it falsely represented human social action. Second, that the representation of social reality produced by positivism was politically conservative , helping to support the status quo, rather than challenging it.

Positivism falsely represented the object of study by reifying social reality as existing objectively and independently of those whose action and labor actually produced those conditions.

Horkheimer argued, in contrast, that critical theory possessed a reflexive element lacking in the positivistic traditional theory.

Critical theory attempted to penetrate the veil of reification so as to accurately determine the extent to which the social reality represented by traditional theory was partial and, in important respects, false.

Both are not simply natural; they are shaped by human activity, and yet the individual perceives himself as receptive and passive in the act of perception.

Horkheimer argues that traditional theory is politically conservative in two respects. This has the effect of circumscribing a general awareness of the possibility of change.

Individuals come to see themselves as generally confronted by an immutable and intransigent social world, to which they must adapt and conform if they wish to survive.

Second, and following on from this, conceiving of reality in these terms serves to unduly pacify individuals.

Individuals come to conceive of themselves as relatively passive recipients of the social reality, falsely imbued with naturalistic characteristics, that confronts them.

We come to conceive of the potential exercise of our individual and collective will as decisively limited by existing conditions, as we find them, so to speak.

The status quo is falsely perceived as a reflection of some natural, inevitable order. Adorno was a leading member of the Frankfurt School.

His writings are widely considered as having made a highly significant contribution to the development of critical theory. Adorno unequivocally shared the moral commitment of critical theory.

He also remained deeply suspicious of positivistic social science and directed a large part of his intellectual interests to a critical analysis of the philosophical basis of this approach.

Adorno persistently criticized any and all philosophical perspectives which posited the existence of some ahistorical and immutable basis to social reality.

However, Adorno ultimately proceeded to explicate an account of the entwinement of reason and domination that was to have a profound effect upon the future development of critical theory.

In stark contrast to the philosophical convention which counter-posed reason and domination, whereby the latter is to be confronted with and dissolved by the application of reason so as to achieve enlightenment, Adorno was to argue that reason itself had become entangled with domination.

Reason had become a tool and device for domination and suffering. This led Adorno to reassess the prospects for overcoming domination and suffering.

Adorno was perhaps the most despairing of the Frankfurt School intellectuals. I shall briefly consider each in turn. However, what Adorno did take from Hegel, amongst other things, was a recognition that philosophy was located within particular socio-historical conditions.

The objects of philosophical study and, indeed, the very exercise of philosophy itself, were social and historical phenomena.

The object of philosophy was not the discovery of timeless, immutable truths, but rather to provide interpretations of a socially constituted reality.

Hegel was also to insist that understanding human behavior was only possible through engaging with the distinct socio-historical conditions, of which human beings were themselves a part.

No one single human being was capable of achieving self-consciousness and exercising reason by herself. In stark contrast to positivism, an Hegelian inspired understanding of social reality accorded a necessary and thoroughly active role to the subject.

Hegel draws our attention to our own role in producing the objective reality with which positivists confront us.

However, Adorno differed from Hegel most unequivocally on one particularly fundamental point. Hegel ultimately viewed reality as a manifestation of some a priori form of consciousness, analogous to a god.

In conceiving of material reality as emanating from consciousness, Hegel was expounding a form of philosophical Idealism. Adorno consistently argued that any such recourse to some a priori, ultimately ahistorical basis to reality was itself best seen as conditioned by material forces and conditions.

For Adorno, the abstractness of such philosophical arguments actually revealed the unduly abstract character of specific social conditions.

Adorno could thereby criticize Hegel for not according enough importance to the constitutive character of distinct social and historical conditions.

Marx has famously been described as standing Hegel on his head. Where Hegel ultimately viewed consciousness as determining the form and content of material conditions, Marx argued that material conditions ultimately determined, or fundamentally conditioned, human consciousness.

For Marx, the ultimate grounds of social reality and the forms of human consciousness required for the maintenance of this reality were economic conditions.

Marx argued that, within capitalist societies, human suffering and domination originated in the economic relations characteristic of capitalism.

Put simply, Marx argued that those who produced economic wealth, the proletariat, were alienated from the fruits of their labor as a result of having to sell their labor to those who controlled the forces of production: those who owned the factories and the like, the bourgeoisie.

Those who owned the most, thus did the least to attain that wealth, whereas those who had the least, did the most. Capitalism was thus considered to be fundamentally based upon structural inequality and entailed one class of people treating another class as mere instruments of their own will.

Under capitalism, Marx argued, human beings could never achieve their full, creative potential as a result of being bound to fundamentally alienating, dehumanizing forms of economic production.

Capitalism ultimately reduces everyone, bourgeoisie and proletariat alike, to mere appendages of the machine.

Adorno was not simply arguing that all human phenomena were socially determined. Rather, he was arguing that an awareness of the extent of domination required both an appreciation of the social basis of human life coupled with the ability to qualitatively distinguish between various social formations in respect of the degree of human suffering prerequisite for their maintenance.

Foremost amongst these were the writings of Friedrich Nietzsche. Of all the critical theorists, the writings of Nietzsche have exerted the most influence upon Adorno in two principal respects.

First, Adorno basically shared the importance which Nietzsche attributed to the autonomous individual. In contrast to those philosophers, such as Kant, who tended to characterize autonomy in terms of the individual gaining a systematic control over her desires and acting in accordance with formal, potentially universalizable rules and procedures, Nietzsche placed far greater importance upon spontaneous, creative human action as constituting the pinnacle of human possibility.

For Nietzsche, reason exercised in this fashion amounted to a form of self-domination. One might say that Nietzsche espoused an account of individual autonomy as aesthetic self-creation.

Adorno argued, along with other intellectuals of that period, that capitalist society was a mass, consumer society, within which individuals were categorized, subsumed, and governed by highly restrictive social, economic and, political structures that had little interest in specific individuals.

Being a true individual, in the broadly Nietzschean sense of that term, was considered to be nigh on impossible under these conditions. Nietzsche refused to endorse any account of reason as a thoroughly benign, or even disinterested force.

Nietzsche argued that the development and deployment of reason was driven by power. Above all else, Nietzsche conceived of reason as a principal means of domination; a tool for dominating nature and others.

Nietzsche vehemently criticized any and all non-adversarial accounts of reason. On this reading, reason is a symptom of, and tool for, domination and hence not a means for overcoming or remedying domination.

Adorno came to share some essential features of this basically instrumentalist account of reason. The book he wrote with Max Horkheimer, Dialectic of Enlightenment , which is a foremost text of critical theory, grapples with precisely this account of reason.

However Adorno insisted against Nietzsche that the transformation of reason was less an expression of human nature and more a consequence of contingent social conditions which might, conceivably, be changed.

Where Nietzsche saw domination as an essential feature of human society, Adorno argued that domination was contingent and potentially capable of being overcome.

Obviously, letting go of this particular aspiration would be intellectually cataclysmic to the emancipatory aims of critical theory.

Adorno uses Nietzsche in an attempt to bolster, not undermine, critical theory. Adorno considered philosophy to be a social and historical exercise, bound by both the past and existing traditions and conditions.

Adorno unequivocally rejected the view that philosophy and the exercise of reason afforded access to a realm of pristine thoughts and reality.

In stark contrast to those rationalists such as Plato, who posited the existence of an ultimate realm of reality and truth underlying the manifest world, Adorno argued that philosophical concepts actually expressed the social structures within which they were found.

Adorno consistently argued that there is no such thing as pure thought: thinking is a socio-historical form of activity.

To many this may sound like mere philosophical relativism: the doctrine which claims that all criteria of truth are socially and historically relative and contingent.

Relativists are typically accused of espousing a largely uncritical form of theorizing. A belief in the social contingency of truth criteria appears to exclude the possibility of criticizing social practices and beliefs by recourse to practices and beliefs alien to that society.

Further, their commitment to the notion of contingency has frequently resulted in philosophical relativists being accused of unduly affirming the legitimacy claims of any given social practice or belief without subjecting them to a sufficiently critical scrutiny.

A perfect example of identity thinking would be those forms of reasoning found within bureaucracies where individual human beings are assembled within different classes or categories.

The sheer, unique specificity of the individual in question is thereby lost to view. One is liable to being treated as a number, and not as a unique person.

Thus, Adorno condemns identity thinking as systematically and necessarily misrepresenting reality by means of the subsumption of specific phenomena under general, more abstract classificatory headings within which the phenomenal world is cognitively assembled.

While this mode of representing reality may have the advantage of facilitating the manipulation of the material environment, it does so at the cost of failing to attend to the specificity of any given phenomenal entity; everything becomes a mere exemplar.

One consequence of apprehending reality in this way is the elimination of qualities or properties that may inhere within any given object but which are conceptually excluded from view, so to speak, as a result of the imposition of a classificatory framework.

In this way, identity thinking misrepresents its object. The essay presents both a critical analysis of enlightenment and an account of the instrumentalization of reason.

The Enlightenment is characteristically thought of as an historical period, spanning the 17th and 18th Centuries, embodying the emancipatory ideals of modernity.

Enlightenment intellectuals were united by a common vision in which a genuinely human social and political order was to be achieved through the dissolution of previously oppressive, unenlightened, institutions.

The establishment of enlightenment ideals was to be achieved by creating the conditions in which individuals could be free to exercise their own reason, free from the dictates of rationally indefensible doctrine and dogma.

The means for establishing this new order was the exercise of reason. Freeing reason from the societal bonds which had constrained it was identified as the means for achieving human sovereignty over a world which was typically conceived of as the manifestation of some higher, divine authority.

Enlightenment embodies the promise of human beings finally taking individual and collective control over the destiny of the species.

Adorno and Horkheimer refused to endorse such a wholly optimistic reading of the effects of the rationalization of society.

Yet the fully enlightened earth radiates disaster triumphant. They do not conceive of enlightenment as confined to a distinct historical period.

Instead they use it to refer to a series of related intellectual and practical operations which are presented as demythologizing, secularizing or disenchanting some mythical, religious or magical representation of the world.

Adorno and Horkheimer extend their understanding of enlightenment to refer to a mode of apprehending reality found in the writings of classical Greek philosophers, such as Parmenides , to 20th century positivists such as Bertrand Russell.

An analysis of the second of these two theses will suffice to explicate the concept of enlightenment Adorno and Horkheimer present.

These accounts typically describe the cognitive ascent of humanity as originating in myth, proceeding to religion, and culminating in secular, scientific reasoning.

On this view, the scientific worldview ushered in by the enlightenment is seen as effecting a radical intellectual break and transition from that which went before.

Adorno and Horkheimer fundamentally challenge this assumption. Both myth and enlightenment are modes of representing reality, both attempt to explain and account for reality.

However, they view the betrayal of enlightenment as being inherently entwined with enlightenment itself.

For them, the reversion to mythology primarily means reverting to an unreflexive, uncritical mode of configuring and understanding reality.

Reverting to mythology means the institution of social conditions, over which individuals come to have little perceived control. Reverting to mythology means a reversion to a heteronomous condition.

Adorno and Horkheimer conceive of enlightenment as principally a demythologizing mode of apprehending reality. For them, the fundamental aim of enlightenment is the establishment of human sovereignty over material reality, over nature: enlightenment is founded upon the drive to master and control nature.

The realization of this aim requires the ability to cognitively and practically manipulate the material environment in accordance with our will.

In order to be said to dominate nature, nature must become an object of our will. Within highly technologically developed societies, the constraints upon our ability to manipulate nature are typically thought of in terms of the development of technological, scientific knowledge: the limits of possibility are determined not by a mythical belief in god , say, but in the development of the technological forces available to us.

This way of conceiving of the tangible limits to human action and cognition had first to overcome a belief that the natural order contained, and was the product of, mythical beings and entities whose presumed existence constituted the ultimate form of authority for those societies enthralled by them.

The realization of human sovereignty required the dissolution of such beliefs and the disenchantment of nature. From now on, matter would at last be mastered without any illusion of ruling or inherent powers, of hidden qualities.

On this reading, enlightenment is conceived of as superseding and replacing mythical and religious belief systems, the falsity of which consist, in large part, of their inability to discern the subjective character and origins of these beliefs.

Few would dispute a view of enlightenment as antithetical to myth. This is, however, precisely what Adorno and Horkheimer argue.

Viewed in this way, the value of nature is necessarily conceived of in primarily instrumental terms: nature is thought of as an object for, and instrument of, human will.

This conception of nature necessitates drawing a distinction between this realm and those beings for whom it is an object.

Thus, the instrumentalist conception of nature entails a conception of human beings as categorically distinct entities, capable of becoming subjects through the exercise of reason upon nature.

For nature to be considered amenable to such subordination requires that it be conceived of as synonymous with the objectified models through which human subjects represent nature to themselves.

To be wholly conceivable in these terms requires the exclusion of any properties that cannot be subsumed within this representational understanding of nature, this particular form of identity thinking.

In this way, our criteria governing the identification and pursuit of valid knowledge are grounded within a hierarchical relationship between human beings and nature: reason is instrumentalized.

Men pay for the increase of their power with alienation from that over which they exercise their power.

Enlightenment behaves towards things as a dictator toward men. He knows them in so far as he can manipulate them. The man of science knows things in so far as he can make them.

In this way, their potentiality is turned to his own ends. Ultimately, the drive to dominate nature results in the establishment of a form of reasoning and a general world-view which appears to exist independently of human beings and, more to the point, is principally characterized by a systematic indifference to human beings and their sufferings: we ultimately become mere objects of the form of reason that we have created.

How do Adorno and Horkheimer attempt to defend such a fundamentally controversial claim? Throughout his philosophical lifetime Adorno argued that authoritative forms of knowledge have become largely conceived of as synonymous with instrumental reasoning; that the world has come to be conceived of as identical with its representation within instrumental reasoning.

Reality is thus deemed discernible only in the form of objectively verifiable facts and alternative modes of representing reality are thereby fundamentally undermined.

However, Adorno argued that human beings are increasingly incapable of legitimately excluding themselves from those determinative processes thought to prevail within the disenchanted material realm: human beings become objects of the form of reasoning through which their status as subjects is first formulated.

Thus, Adorno discerns a particular irony in the totalizing representation of reality which enlightenment prioritizes.

Human sovereignty over nature is pursued by the accumulation of hard, objective data which purport to accurately describe and catalogue this reality.

As it stands, of course, the mere act of describing any particular aspect of the material realm does not, by itself, promote the cause of human freedom.

It may directly facilitate the exercise of freedom by providing sufficient knowledge upon which an agent may exercise discretionary judgment concerning, say, the viability of any particular desire, but, by itself, accurate descriptions of the world are not a sufficient condition for freedom.

Adorno, however, argues that the very constituents of this way of thinking are inextricably entwined with heteronomy. The question as to whether these facts might change is ruled out by enlightened thought as a pseudo-problem.

Everything which is, is thus represented as a kind of fate, no less unalterable and uninterogable than mythical fate itself.

Conceived of in this way, material reality appears as an immutable and fixed order of things which necessarily pre-structures and pre-determines our consciousness of it.

The more the machinery of thought subjects existence to itself, the more blind its resignation in reproducing existence. Hence enlightenment reverts to mythology, which it never really knew how to elude.

For in its figures mythology had the essence of the status quo: cycle, fate, and domination of the world reflected as the truth and deprived of hope.

The ostensible difference between them is that the realm of facts appears to be utterly objective and devoid of any subjective, or anthropomorphic forces.

Indeed, the identification of a truly objective order was explicitly pursued through the exclusion of any such subjective prejudices and fallacies.

Subjective reasoning is fallacious reasoning, on this view. The pursuit of human sovereignty over nature is predicated upon a mode of reasoning whose functioning necessitates subsuming all of nature within a single, representational framework.

Assembled within a classificatory scheme these facts are not, cannot ever be, a direct expression of that to which they refer; no aspect of its thought, by its very nature, can ever legitimately be said to possess that quality.

However, while facts constitute the principal constituents of this classificatory scheme, the scheme itself, this mode of configuring reality, is founded upon a common, single cognitive currency, which necessarily holds that the essence of all that can be known is reducible to a single, inherently quantifiable property: matter.

They insist that this mode of configuring reality originates within a desire to dominate nature and that this domination is effected by reducing the manifold diversity of nature to, ultimately, a single, manipulable form.

For them the realization of the single totality that proceeds from the domination of nature necessitates that reason itself be shorn of any ostensibly partial or particularistic elements.

They conceive of enlightenment as aspiring towards the institution of a form of reasoning which is fundamentally universal and abstract in character: a form of reasoning which posits the existence of a unified order, a priori.

Its rationalist and empiricist versions do not part company on this point. Reality is henceforth to be known in so far as it is quantifiable.

Material reality is presented as having become an object of calculation. The form of reasoning which is adequate to the task of representing reality in this way must be necessarily abstract and formal in character.

Its evaluative procedures must, similarly, avoid the inclusion of any unduly restrictive and partial affiliations to any specific component property of the system as a whole if they are to be considered capable of being applicable to the system as a whole.

Adorno and Horkheimer present the aspiration towards achieving human sovereignty over nature as culminating in the institution of a mode of reasoning which is bound to the identification and accumulation of facts; which restricts the perceived value of the exercise of reason to one which is instrumental for the domination of nature; and which, finally, aims at the assimilation of all of nature under a single, universalizing representational order.

Adorno and Horkheimer present enlightenment as fundamentally driven by the desire to master nature, of bringing all of material reality under a single representational system, within which reason is transformed into a tool for achieving this end.

The attempt to fully dominate nature culminates in the institution of a social and political order over which we have lost control.

If one wishes to survive, either as an individual or even as a nation, one must conform to, and learn to utilize, instrumental reason. The facts upon which instrumental reasoning goes to work are themselves conceptual abstractions and not direct manifestations of phenomena, as they claim to be.

Adorno posits identity thinking as fundamentally concerned not to understand phenomena but to control and manipulate it.

A genuinely critical form of philosophy aims to both undercut the dominance of identity thinking and to create an awareness of the potential of apprehending and relating to phenomena in a non-coercive manner.

Adorno argues that the instrumentalization of reason has fundamentally undermined both. He argues that social life in modern societies no longer coheres around a set of widely espoused moral truths and that modern societies lack a moral basis.

In a letter he sounded a related criticism of Schoenberg:. Twelve-tone technique alone is nothing but the principle of motivic elaboration and variation, as developed in the sonata, but elevated now to a comprehensive principle of construction, namely transformed into an a priori form and, by that token, detached from the surface of the composition.

At this point Adorno reversed his earlier priorities: now his musical activities came second to the development of a philosophical theory of aesthetics.

Thus, in the middle of he accepted Paul Tillich 's offer to present an habilitation on Kierkegaard , which Adorno eventually submitted under the title The Construction of the Aesthetic.

At the time, Kierkegaard 's philosophy exerted a strong influence, chiefly through its claim to pose an alternative to Idealism and Hegel 's philosophy of history.

Yet when Adorno turned his attention to Kierkegaard , watchwords like "anxiety," "inwardness" and "leap"—instructive for existentialist philosophy —were detached from their theological origins and posed, instead, as problems for aesthetics.

Receiving favourable reports from Professors Tillich and Horkheimer, as well as Benjamin and Kracauer, the University conferred on Adorno the venia legendi in February ; on the very day his revised study was published, 23 March , Hitler seized dictatorial powers.

Several months after qualifying as a lecturer in philosophy, Adorno delivered an inaugural lecture at the Institute for Social Research , an independent organization that had recently appointed Horkheimer as its director and, with the arrival of the literary scholar Leo Lowenthal , social psychologist Erich Fromm and philosopher Herbert Marcuse , sought to exploit recent theoretical and methodological advances in the social sciences.

His lecture, "The Actuality of Philosophy," created a scandal. In it Adorno not only deviated from the theoretical program Horkheimer had laid out a year earlier but challenged philosophy's very capacity for comprehending reality as such: "For the mind," Adorno announced, "is indeed not capable of producing or grasping the totality of the real, but it may be possible to penetrate the detail, to explode in miniature the mass of merely existing reality.

Following Horkheimer's taking up the directorship of the Institute, a new journal, Zeitschrift für Sozialforschung , was produced to publish the research of Institute members both before and after its relocation to the United States.

In his new role as social theorist, Adorno's philosophical analysis of cultural phenomena heavily relied on the language of historical materialism , as concepts like reification , false consciousness and ideology came to play an ever more prominent role in his work.

At the same time, however, and owing to both the presence of another prominent sociologist at the Institute, Karl Mannheim , as well as the methodological problem posed by treating objects—like "musical material"—as ciphers of social contradictions, Adorno was compelled to abandon any notion of "value-free" sociology in favour of a form of ideology critique that held on to an idea of truth.

Before his emigration in autumn , Adorno began work on a Singspiel based on Mark Twain 's The Adventures of Tom Sawyer titled The Treasure of Indian Joe , which he never completed; by the time he fled Hitler's Germany Adorno had already written over opera or concert reviews and 50 critiques of music composition.

As the Nazi party became the largest party in the Reichstag , Horkheimer's observation proved typical for his milieu: "Only one thing is certain", he wrote, "the irrationality of society has reached a point where only the gloomiest predictions have any plausibility.

Adorno's house on Seeheimer Strasse was similarly searched in July and his application for membership in the Reich Chamber of Literature denied on the grounds that membership was limited to "persons who belong to the German nation by profound ties of character and blood.

As a non- Aryan ," he was informed, "you are unable to feel and appreciate such an obligation. After the possibility of transferring his habilitation to the University of Vienna came to nothing, Adorno considered relocating to Britain upon his father's suggestion.

During the next four years at Oxford, Adorno made repeated trips to Germany to see both his parents and Gretel, who was still working in Berlin.

Under the direction of Gilbert Ryle , Adorno worked on a dialectical critique of Husserl 's epistemology.

After months of strained relations, Horkheimer and Adorno reestablished their essential theoretical alliance during meetings in Paris.

But Adorno's attempts to break out of the sociology of music were twice thwarted: neither the study of Mannheim he had been working on for years nor extracts from his study of Husserl were accepted by the Zeitschrift.

Impressed by Horkheimer's book of aphorisms, Dawn and Decline , Adorno began working on his own book of aphorisms, what later became Minima Moralia.

To the end of his life, Adorno never abandoned the hope of completing Berg's unfinished opera Lulu. At this time Adorno was in intense correspondence with Walter Benjamin about the latter's Arcades Project.

After receiving an invitation from Horkheimer to visit the Institute in New York, Adorno sailed for New York on June 9, , and stayed for two weeks.

While he was in New York, Horkheimer's essays "The Latest Attack on Metaphysics" and "Traditional and Critical Theory," which would soon become instructive for the Institute's self-understanding, were the subject of intense discussion.

Soon after his return to Europe, Gretel moved to Britain, where she and Adorno were married on September 8, ; a little over a month later, Horkheimer telegrammed from New York with news of a position Adorno could take with the Princeton Radio Project , then under the directorship of the Austrian sociologist Paul Lazarsfeld.

Yet Adorno's work continued with studies of Beethoven and Richard Wagner published in as "Fragments on Wagner" , drafts of which he read to Benjamin during their final meeting, in December on the Italian Riviera.

According to Benjamin, these drafts were astonishing for "the precision of their materialist deciphering" as well as the way in which "musical facts Adorno sailed for New York on February 16, Soon after settling into his new home on Riverside Drive, Adorno met with Lazarsfeld in Newark, New Jersey , to discuss the Project's plans for investigating the impact of broadcast music.

Although he was expected to embed the Project's research within a wider theoretical context, it soon became apparent that the Project was primarily concerned with data collection to be used by administrators for establishing whether groups of listeners could be targeted by broadcasts specifically aimed at them.

Expected to make use of devices with which listeners could press a button to indicate whether they liked or disliked a particular piece of music, Adorno bristled with distaste and astonishment: "I reflected that culture was simply the condition that precluded a mentality that tried to measure it.

Unsurprisingly, Adorno's studies found little resonance among members of the project. At the end of , when Lazarsfeld submitted a second application for funding, the musical section of the study was left out.

Yet during the two years during which he worked on the Project, Adorno was prolific, publishing "The Radio Symphony", "A Social Critique of Radio Music", and "On Popular Music", texts that, along with the draft memorandum and other unpublished writings, are found in Robert Hullot-Kentor's translation, Current of Music.

In light of this situation, Horkheimer soon found a permanent post for Adorno at the Institute. In addition to helping with the Zeitschrift , Adorno was expected to be the Institute's liaison with Benjamin, who soon passed on to New York the study of Charles Baudelaire he hoped would serve as a model of the larger Arcades Project.

In correspondence, the two men discussed the difference in their conceptions of the relationship between critique and artworks that had become manifest through Benjamin's " The Work of Art in the Age of its Technical Reproducibility ".

At around the same time Adorno and Horkheimer began planning for a joint work on "dialectical logic", which would later become Dialectic of Enlightenment.

Alarmed by reports from Europe, where Adorno's parents suffered increasing discrimination and Benjamin was interned in Colombes , they entertained few delusions about their work's practical effects.

After learning that his Spanish visa was invalid and fearing deportation back to France, Benjamin took an overdose of morphine tablets.

In light of recent events, the Institute set about formulating a theory of antisemitism and fascism. On one side were those who supported Franz Leopold Neumann 's thesis according to which National Socialism was a form of " monopoly capitalism "; on the other were those who supported Friedrich Pollock 's " state capitalist theory.

Adorno arrived with a draft of his Philosophy of New Music , a dialectical critique of twelve-tone music that Adorno felt, while writing it, was a departure from the theory of art he had spent the previous decades elaborating.

Horkheimer's reaction to the manuscript was wholly positive: "If I have ever in the whole of my life felt enthusiasm about anything, then I did on this occasion," he wrote after reading the manuscript.

First published in a small mimeographed edition in May as Philosophical Fragments , the text waited another three years before achieving book form when it was published with its definitive title, Dialectic of Enlightenment , by the Amsterdam publisher Querido Verlag.

This "reflection on the destructive aspect of progress" proceeded through the chapters that treated rationality as both the liberation from and further domination of nature, interpretations of both Homer 's Odyssey and the Marquis de Sade , as well as analyses of the culture industry and antisemitism.

With their joint work completed, the two turned their attention to studies on antisemitism and authoritarianism in collaboration with the Nevitt Sanford -led Public Opinion Study Group and the American Jewish Committee.

In line with these studies, Adorno produced an analysis of the Californian radio preacher Martin Luther Thomas. Fascist propaganda of this sort, Adorno wrote, "simply takes people for what they are: genuine children of today's standardized mass culture who have been robbed to a great extent of their autonomy and spontaneity".

In addition to the aphorisms that conclude Dialectic of Enlightenment , Adorno put together a collection of aphorisms in honor of Horkheimer's 50th birthday that were later published as Minima Moralia: Reflections from Damaged Life.

These fragmentary writings, inspired by a renewed reading of Nietzsche, treated issues like emigration , totalitarianism , and individuality , as well as everyday matters such as giving presents, dwelling and the impossibility of love.

In California Adorno made the acquaintance of Charlie Chaplin and became friends with Fritz Lang and Hanns Eisler , with whom he completed a study of film music in In this study the authors pushed for the greater usage of avant-garde music in film, urging that music be used to supplement, not simply accompany, films' visual aspect.

Adorno also assisted Thomas Mann with his novel Doktor Faustus after the latter asked for his help. Before his return, Adorno had reached an agreement with a Tübingen publisher to print an expanded version of Philosophy of New Music and completed two compositions: Four Songs for Voice and Piano by Stefan George, op.

Upon his return, Adorno helped shape the political culture of West Germany. Until his death in , twenty years after his return, Adorno contributed to the intellectual foundations of the Federal Republic, as a professor at Frankfurt University , critic of the vogue enjoyed by Heideggerian philosophy, partisan of critical sociology, and teacher of music at the Darmstadt International Summer Courses for New Music.

Adorno resumed his teaching duties at the university soon after his arrival, [ when? Adorno's surprise at his students' passionate interest in intellectual matters did not, however, blind him to continuing problems within Germany: The literary climate was dominated by writers who had remained in Germany during Hitler's rule, the government re-employed people who had been active in the Nazi apparatus and people were generally loath to own up to their own collaboration or the guilt they thus incurred.

Instead, the ruined city of Frankfurt continued as if nothing had happened, [ citation needed ] holding on to ideas of the true, the beautiful, and the good despite the atrocities, hanging on to a culture that had itself been lost in rubble or killed off in the concentration camps.

All the enthusiasm Adorno's students showed for intellectual matters could not erase the suspicion that, in the words of Max Frisch , culture had become an "alibi" for the absence of political consciousness.

Starting with his essay Wagner, Nietzsche and Hitler , [35] Adorno produced a series of influential works to describe psychological fascist traits.

One of these works was The Authoritarian Personality , [36] published as a contribution to the Studies in Prejudice performed by multiple research institutes in the US, and consisting of a ' qualitative interpretations ' that uncovered the authoritarian character of test persons through indirect questions.

In he continued on the topic with his essay Freudian Theory and the Pattern of Fascist Propaganda , in which he said that "Psychological dispositions do not actually cause fascism; rather, fascism defines a psychological area which can be successfully exploited by the forces which promote it for entirely non-psychological reasons of self-interest.

In Adorno participated in a group experiment, revealing residual National Socialist attitudes among the recently democratized Germans.

He then published two influential essays, The Meaning of Working Through the Past , and Education after Auschwitz , in which he argued on the survival of the uneradicated National Socialism in the mind-sets and institutions of the post Germany, and that there is still a real risk that it could rise again.

Here he emphasized the importance of data collection and statistical evaluation while asserting that such empirical methods have only an auxiliary function and must lead to the formation of theories which would "raise the harsh facts to the level of consciousness.

With Horkheimer as dean of the Arts Faculty, then rector of the university, responsibilities for the Institute's work fell upon Adorno.

At the same time, however, Adorno renewed his musical work: with talks at the Kranichsteiner Musikgesellschaft, another in connection with a production of Ernst Krenek 's opera Leben des Orest , and a seminar on "Criteria of New Music" at the Fifth International Summer Course for New Music at Kranichstein.

Adorno also became increasingly involved with the publishing house of Peter Suhrkamp , inducing the latter to publish Benjamin's Berlin Childhood Around , Kracauer's writings and a two-volume edition of Benjamin's writings.

Adorno's own recently published Minima Moralia was not only well received in the press, but also met with great admiration from Thomas Mann, who wrote to Adorno from America in I have spent days attached to your book as if by a magnet.

Every day brings new fascination It is said that the companion star to Sirius, white in colour, is made of such dense material that a cubic inch of it would weigh a tonne here.

This is why it has such an extremely powerful gravitational field; in this respect it is similar to your book. Yet Adorno was no less moved by other public events: protesting the publication of Heinrich Mann 's novel Professor Unrat with its film title, The Blue Angel ; declaring his sympathy with those who protested the scandal of big-game hunting and penning a defense of prostitutes.

Because Adorno's American citizenship would have been forfeited by the middle of had he continued to stay outside the country, he returned once again to Santa Monica to survey his prospects at the Hacker Foundation.

While there he wrote a content analysis of newspaper horoscopes now collected in The Stars Down to Earth , and the essays "Television as Ideology" and "Prologue to Television"; even so, he was pleased when, at the end of ten months, he was enjoined to return as co-director of the Institute.

In response to the publication of Thomas Mann 's The Black Swan , Adorno penned a long letter to the author, who then approved its publication in the literary journal Akzente.

A second collection of essays, Notes to Literature , appeared in Adorno's entrance into literary discussions continued in his June lecture at the annual conference of the Hölderlin Society.

Although the Zeitschrift was never revived, the Institute nevertheless published a series of important sociological books, including Sociologica , a collection of essays, Gruppenexperiment , Betriebsklima , a study of work satisfaction among workers in Mannesmann, and Soziologische Exkurse , a textbook-like anthology intended as an introductory work about the discipline.

Throughout the fifties and sixties, Adorno became a public figure , not simply through his books and essays, but also through his appearances in radio and newspapers.

Yet conflicts between the so-called Darmstadt school , which included composers like Pierre Boulez , Karlheinz Stockhausen , Luigi Nono , Bruno Maderna , Karel Goeyvaerts , Luciano Berio and Gottfried Michael Koenig , soon arose, receiving explicit expression in Adorno's lecture, "The Aging of the New Music", where he argued that atonality's freedom was being restricted to serialism in much the same way as it was once restricted by twelve-tone technique.

With his friend Eduard Steuermann , Adorno feared that music was being sacrificed to stubborn rationalization. During this time Adorno not only produced a significant series of notes on Beethoven which was never completed and only published posthumously , but also published Mahler: A Musical Physiognomy in In his return to Kranichstein, Adorno called for what he termed a "musique informelle", which would possess the ability "really and truly to be what it is, without the ideological pretense of being something else.

Or rather, to admit frankly the fact of non-identity and to follow through its logic to the end. At the same time Adorno struck up relationships with contemporary German-language poets such as Paul Celan and Ingeborg Bachmann.

Adorno's dictum—"To write poetry after Auschwitz is barbaric"—posed the question of what German culture could mean after Auschwitz; his own continual revision of this dictum—in Negative Dialectics , for example, he wrote that "Perennial suffering has as much right to expression as a tortured man has to scream"; while in "Commitment," he wrote in that the dictum "expresses in negative form the impulse which inspires committed literature"—was part of post-war Germany's struggle with history and culture.

Adorno additionally befriended the writer and poet Hans Magnus Enzensberger as well as the film-maker Alexander Kluge.

In , Adorno was elected to the post of chairman of the German Sociological Society, where he presided over two important conferences: in , on "Max Weber and Sociology" and in on "Late Capitalism or Industrial Society".

Adorno's critique of the dominant climate of post-war Germany was also directed against the pathos that had grown up around Heideggerianism, as practiced by writers like Karl Jaspers and Otto Friedrich Bollnow , and which had subsequently seeped into public discourse.

His publication of The Jargon of Authenticity took aim at the halo such writers had attached to words like "angst", "decision" and "leap". After seven years of work, Adorno completed Negative Dialectics in , after which, during the summer semester of and the winter semester of —68, he offered regular philosophy seminars to discuss the book chapter by chapter.

One objection which would soon take on ever greater importance, was that critical thought must adopt the standpoint of the oppressed, to which Adorno replied that negative dialectics was concerned "with the dissolution of standpoint thinking itself.

At the time of Negative Dialectics ' publication, the fragility of West German democracy led to increasing student protests.

Monopolistic trends in the media, an educational crisis in the universities, the Shah of Iran's state visit, German support for the war in Vietnam and the emergency laws combined to create a highly unstable situation.

Like many of his students, Adorno too opposed the emergency laws , as well as the war in Vietnam, which, he said, proved the continued existence of the "world of torture that had begun in Auschwitz".

This death, as well as the subsequent acquittal of the responsible officer, were both commented upon in Adorno's lectures. As politicization increased, rifts developed within both the Institute's relationship with its students as well as within the Institute itself.

Soon Adorno himself would become an object of the students' ire. After a group of students marched to the lectern, unfurling a banner that read "Berlin's left-wing fascists greet Teddy the Classicist," a number of those present left the lecture in protest after Adorno refused to abandon his talk in favour of discussing his attitude on the current political situation.

But as progressed, Adorno became increasingly critical of the students' disruptions to university life. His isolation was only compounded by articles published in the magazine alternative , which, following the lead of Hannah Arendt 's articles in Merkur , claimed Adorno had subjected Benjamin to pressure during his years of exile in Berlin and compiled Benjamin's Writings and Letters with a great deal of bias.

In response, Benjamin's longtime friend Gershom Scholem , wrote to the editor of Merkur to express his disapproval of the "in part, shameful, not to say disgraceful" remarks by Arendt.

Relations between students and the West German state continued deteriorating. In spring , a prominent SDS spokesman, Rudi Dutschke , was gunned down in the streets; in response, massive demonstrations took place, directed in particular against the Springer Press , which had led a campaign to vilify the students.

An open appeal published in Die Zeit , signed by Adorno, called for an inquiry into the social reasons that gave rise to this assassination attempt as well as an investigation into the Springer Press' manipulation of public opinion.

At the same time, however, Adorno protested against disruptions of his own lectures and refused to express his solidarity with their political goals, maintaining instead his autonomy as a theoretician.

Adorno rejected the so-called unity of theory and praxis advocated by the students and argued that the students' actions were premised upon a mistaken analysis of the situation.

The building of barricades, he wrote to Marcuse, is "ridiculous against those who administer the bomb. Upon his return to Frankfurt, events prevented his concentrating upon the book on aesthetics he wished to write: "Valid student claims and dubious actions," he wrote to Marcuse, "are all so mixed up together that all productive work and even sensible thought are scarcely possible any more.

Adorno began writing an introduction to a collection of poetry by Rudolf Borchardt, which was connected with a talk entitled "Charmed Language," delivered in Zurich, followed by a talk on aesthetics in Paris where he met Beckett again.

Beginning in October , Adorno took up work on Aesthetic Theory. In June he completed Catchwords: Critical Models. During the winter semester of —69 Adorno was on sabbatical leave from the university and thus able to dedicate himself to the completion of his book of aesthetics.

For the summer semester Adorno planned a lecture course entitled "An Introduction to Dialectical Thinking," as well as a seminar on the dialectics of subject and object.

But at the first lecture Adorno's attempt to open up the lecture and invite questions whenever they arose degenerated into a disruption from which he quickly fled: after a student wrote on the blackboard "If Adorno is left in peace, capitalism will never cease," three women students approached the lectern, bared their breasts and scattered flower petals over his head.

After further disruptions to his lectures, Adorno canceled the lectures for the rest of the seminar, continuing only with his philosophy seminar.

In the summer of , weary from these activities, Adorno returned once again to Zermatt, Switzerland , at the foot of Matterhorn to restore his strength.

On August 6 he died of a heart attack. Their major theories fascinated many left-wing intellectuals in the first half of the 20th century.

Lorenz Jäger speaks critically of Adorno's " Achilles' heel " in his political biography: that Adorno placed "almost unlimited trust in finished teachings, in Marxism, psychoanalysis, and the teachings of the Second Viennese School.

Adorno's adoption of Hegelian philosophy can be traced back to his inaugural lecture in , in which he postulated: "only dialectically does philosophical interpretation seem possible to me" Gesammelte Schriften 1: Hegel rejected the idea of separating methods and content, because thinking is always thinking of something; dialectics for him is "the comprehended movement of the object itself.

Adorno understood his Three Studies of Hegel as "preparation of a changed definition of dialectics" and that they stop "where the start should be" Gesammelte Schriften 5: f.

Adorno dedicated himself to this task in one of his later major works, the Negative Dialectics The title expresses "tradition and rebellion in equal measure.

Marx's Critique of Political Economy clearly shaped Adorno's thinking. As described by Jürgen Habermas , Marxist critique is, for Adorno, a "silent orthodoxy, whose categories [are revealed] in Adorno's cultural critique , although their influence is not explicitly named.

These are closely related to Adorno's concept of trade , which stands in the center of his philosophy, not exclusively restricted to economic theory.

Adorno's "exchange society" Tauschgesellschaft , with its "insatiable and destructive appetite for expansion," is easily decoded as a description of capitalism.

Class theory , which appears less frequently in Adorno's work, also has its origins in Marxist thinking. Adorno made explicit reference to class in two of his texts: the first, the subchapter "Classes and Strata" Klassen und Schichten , from his Introduction to the Sociology of Music ; the second, an unpublished essay, "Reflections on Class Theory", published postmortem in his Collected Works.

Psychoanalysis is a constitutive element of critical theory. In it Adorno argued that "the healing of all neuroses is synonymous with the complete understanding of the meaning of their symptoms by the patient".

In his essay "On the Relationship between Sociology and Psychology" , he justified the need to "supplement the theory of society with psychology, especially analytically oriented social psychology" in the face of fascism.

Adorno emphasized the necessity of researching prevailing psychological drives in order to explain the cohesion of a repressive society acting against fundamental human interests.

Adorno always remained a supporter and defender of Freudian orthodox doctrine, "psychoanalysis in its strict form". He expressed reservations about sociologized psychoanalysis [63] as well as about its reduction to a therapeutic procedure.

Adorno's work sets out from a central insight he shares with all early 20th century avant-garde art: the recognition of what is primitive in ourselves and the world itself.

Neither Picasso 's fascination with African sculpture nor Mondrian 's reduction of painting to its most elementary component—the line—is comprehensible outside this concern with primitivism Adorno shared with the century's most radical art.

At that time, the Western world, beset by world-wars, colonialist consolidation and accelerating commodification , sank into the very barbarism civilization had prided itself in overcoming.

According to Adorno, society's self-preservation had become indistinguishable from societally sanctioned self-sacrifice: of "primitive" peoples, primitive aspects of the ego and those primitive, mimetic desires found in imitation and sympathy.

Adorno's theory proceeds from an understanding of this primitive quality of reality which seeks to counteract whatever aims either to repress this primitive aspect or to further those systems of domination set in place by this return to barbarism.

From this perspective, Adorno's writings on politics, philosophy, music and literature are a lifelong critique of the ways in which each tries to justify self-mutilation as the necessary price of self-preservation.

According to Adorno's translator Robert Hullot-Kentor, the central motive of Adorno's work thus consists in determining "how life could be more than the struggle for self-preservation".

Adorno, along with the other major Frankfurt School theorists Max Horkheimer and Herbert Marcuse , argued that advanced capitalism had managed to contain or liquidate the forces that would bring about its collapse and that the revolutionary moment, when it would have been possible to transform it into socialism, had passed.

As he put it at the beginning of his Negative Dialectics , philosophy is still necessary because the time to realise it was missed.

Adorno argued that capitalism had become more entrenched through its attack on the objective basis of revolutionary consciousness and through liquidation of the individualism that had been the basis of critical consciousness.

Adorno, as well as Horkheimer, critiqued all forms of positivism as responsible for technocracy and disenchantment and sought to produce a theory that both rejected positivism and avoided reinstating traditional metaphysics.

Adorno and Horkheimer have been criticized for over-applying the term "positivism," especially in their interpretations of Ludwig Wittgenstein and Karl Popper as positivists.

Adorno criticized jazz and popular music , viewing it as part of the culture industry , that contributes to the present sustainability of capitalism by rendering it "aesthetically pleasing" and "agreeable".

In his early essays for the Vienna-based journal Anbruch , Adorno claimed that musical progress is proportional to the composer's ability to constructively deal with the possibilities and limitations contained within what he called the "musical material.

The objective validity of composition, according to him, rests with neither the composer's genius nor the work's conformity with prior standards, but with the way in which the work coherently expresses the dialectic of the material.

In this sense, the contemporary absence of composers of the status of Bach or Beethoven is not the sign of musical regression; instead, new music is to be credited with laying bare aspects of the musical material previously repressed: The musical material's liberation from number, the harmonic series and tonal harmony.

Thus, historical progress is achieved only by the composer who "submits to the work and seemingly does not undertake anything active except to follow where it leads.

In the face of this radical liberation of the musical material, Adorno came to criticize those who, like Stravinsky, withdrew from this freedom by taking recourse to forms of the past as well as those who turned twelve-tone composition into a technique which dictated the rules of composition.

Adorno saw the culture industry as an arena in which critical tendencies or potentialities were eliminated.

He argued that the culture industry, which produced and circulated cultural commodities through the mass media, manipulated the population.

Popular culture was identified as a reason why people become passive; the easy pleasures available through consumption of popular culture made people docile and content, no matter how terrible their economic circumstances.

He wrote that "the same thing is offered to everybody by the standardized production of consumption goods" but this is concealed under "the manipulation of taste and the official culture's pretense of individualism".

Consumers purchase the illusion that every commodity or product is tailored to the individual's personal preference, by incorporating subtle modifications or inexpensive "add-ons" in order to keep the consumer returning for new purchases, and therefore more revenue for the corporation system.

Adorno conceptualized this phenomenon as pseudo-individualisation and the always-the-same. Adorno's analysis allowed for a critique of mass culture from the left which balanced the critique of popular culture from the right.

From both perspectives—left and right—the nature of cultural production was felt to be at the root of social and moral problems resulting from the consumption of culture.

However, while the critique from the right emphasized moral degeneracy ascribed to sexual and racial influences within popular culture, Adorno located the problem not with the content, but with the objective realities of the production of mass culture and its effects, e.

The latter has become a particularly productive, yet highly contested term in cultural studies. Many of Adorno's reflections on aesthetics and music have only just begun to be debated, as a collection of essays on the subject, many of which had not previously been translated into English, has only recently been collected and published as Essays on Music.

Adorno's work in the years before his death was shaped by the idea of "negative dialectics", set out especially in his book of that title.

A key notion in the work of the Frankfurt School since Dialectic of Enlightenment had been the idea of thought becoming an instrument of domination that subsumes all objects under the control of the dominant subject, especially through the notion of identity, i.

Indeed, Adorno sought to ground the critical bite of his sociological work in his critique of identity, which he took to be a reification in thought of the commodity form or exchange relation which always presumes a false identity between different things.

The potential to criticise arises from the gap between the concept and the object, which can never go into the former without remainder. This gap, this non-identity in identity, was the secret to a critique of both material life and conceptual reflection.

Adorno's reputation as a musicologist has been in steady decline since his death. His sweeping criticisms of jazz and championing of the Second Viennese School in opposition to Stravinsky have caused him to fall out of favour.

The distinguished American scholar Richard Taruskin [72] declared Adorno to be "preposterously over-rated. He may have championed Schoenberg, but the composer notably failed to return the compliment: "I have never been able to bear the fellow [ Writing in the New Yorker in , music critic Alex Ross , argued that Adorno's work has a renewed importance in the digital age: "The pop hegemony is all but complete, its superstars dominating the media and wielding the economic might of tycoons Culture appears more monolithic than ever, with a few gigantic corporations—Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon—presiding over unprecedented monopolies.

Adorno states that a start to understand the recognition in respect of any particular song hit may be made by drafting a scheme which divides the experience of recognition into its different components.

All the factors people enumerate are interwoven to a degree that would be impossible to separate from one another in reality. Adorno's scheme is directed towards the different objective elements involved in the experience of recognition, than the actual experience felt for the individual.

Adorno posits social totality as an automatic system. For him it was existent, but inhuman. Müller argues against the existence of such a system and claims that critical theory provides no practical solution for societal change.

He concludes that Jürgen Habermas , in particular, and the Frankfurt School in general, misconstrue Marx.

The phenomenon of standardization is "a concept used to characterize the formulaic products of capitalist-driven mass media and mass culture that appeal to the lowest common denominator in pursuit of maximum profit".

Mass media is employed to deliver messages about products and services to consumers in order to convince these individuals to purchase the commodity they are advertising.

Standardization consists of the production of large amounts of commodities to then pursue consumers in order to gain the maximum profit possible.

They do this, as mentioned above, by individualizing products to give the illusion to consumers that they are in fact purchasing a product or service that was specifically designed for them.

Adorno highlights the issues created with the construction of popular music, where different samples of music used in the creation of today's chart-topping songs are put together in order to create, re-create, and modify numerous tracks by using the same variety of samples from one song to another.

He makes a distinction between "Apologetic music" and "Critical music". Apologetic music is defined as the highly produced and promoted music of the "pop music" industry: music that is composed of variable parts and interchanged to create several different songs.

Serious music, according to Adorno, achieves excellence when its whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

Seine Themen Fußball Europaliga von heute Die Profis Serie Er Lowlights über den Zusammenhang von Autoritätsgläubigkeit und Faschismus, sprach über Sweet Virginia kulturelle Full Hd Stream Filme soziale Strukturveränderung Adrianne Palicki geeinten Deutschland". Verwandte Titel. Wenn Adorno spricht. Kritisch wird es, wenn Authentizität vorgetäuscht wird, wo nur Schema ist. Nachwort von zu Komposition für den Film GS — Abstieg Wrecked die Finsternis von Nazideutschland. In: Naharaim. Bertram: Metaphysik und Metaphysikkritik. Das Studium absolvierte er sehr zügig: Ende schloss er es mit einer Dissertation über Edmund Husserls Phänomenologie mit summa cum laude ab. Theodor W. Adorno

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3 Kommentare zu „Theodor W. Adorno“

  1. Ich denke, dass Sie den Fehler zulassen. Ich kann die Position verteidigen. Schreiben Sie mir in PM, wir werden reden.

    Ist Einverstanden, dieser ausgezeichnete Gedanke fällt gerade übrigens

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