Reflections: essays, aphorisms, autobiographical writing
A companion volume to Illuminations, the first collection of Walter Benjamin's writings, Reflections presents a further sampling of his wide-ranging work. Here Benjamin evolves a theory of language as the medium of all creation, discusses theater and surrealism, reminisces about Berlin in the 1920s, recalls conversations with Bertolt Brecht, and provides travelogues of various cities, including Moscow under Stalin. He moves seamlessly from literary criticism to autobiography to philosophical-theological speculations, cementing his reputation as one of the greatest and most versatile writers of the twentieth century. Also included is a new preface by Leon Wieseltier that explores Benjamin's continued relevance for our times.
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If mythical violence is lawmaking, divine violence is law-destroying; if the former
sets boundaries, the latter boundlessly destroys them; if mythical violence brings
at once guilt and retribution, divine power only expiates; if the former threatens, ...
But an order the sole intrinsic concepts of which are misfortune and guilt, and
within which there is no conceivable path of liberation (for insofar as something is
fate, it is misfortune and guilt) — such an order cannot be religious, no matter
While fate unfolds the immense complexity of the guilty person, the complications
and bonds of his guilt, character gives this mystical enslavement of the person to
the guilt context the answer of genius. Complication becomes simplicity, fate ...
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We can remark in passing that there is no better starting point for thought than laughter. In particular, thought usually has a better chance when one is shaken by laughter than when one’s mind is ... Vollständige Rezension lesen
A Berlin Chronicle
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Reflections: Essays, Aphorisms, Autobiographical Writings
Eingeschränkte Leseprobe - 2019