By Stefan Müller-Doohm

ISBN-10: 0745692745

ISBN-13: 9780745692746

'Even the biographical person is a social category', wrote Adorno. 'It can merely be outlined in a residing context including others.' during this significant new biography, Stefan Muller-Doohm turns this maxim again on Adorno himself and gives a wealthy and entire account of the existence and paintings of 1 of the main significant minds of the 20th century.

This authoritative biography levels around the entire of Adorno's existence and profession, from his early life and scholar years to his years in emigration within the usa and his go back to postwar Germany. while, Muller-Doohm examines the entire diversity of Adorno's writings on philosophy, sociology, literary concept, tune concept and cultural feedback. Drawing on an array of assets from Adorno's own correspondence with Horkheimer, Benjamin, Berg, Marcuse, Kracauer and Mann to interviews, notes and either released and unpublished writings, Muller-Doohm situates Adorno's contributions within the context of his occasions and offers a wealthy and balanced appraisal of his importance within the twentieth Century as a complete.

Muller-Doohm's transparent prose succeeds in making available probably the most complicated components of Adorno's concept. This awesome biography would be the typical paintings on Adorno for years yet to come.

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In addition, he took obvious personal pleasure in the Wiesengrund: The Jewish Heritage 21 concerts given at home, the frequent guests and the lively discussions on such topics as the current productions in the city theatre, the ‘rather questionable performance of Beethoven’s Violin Concerto’ in the concert series put on by the Museumsgesellschaft in the Saalbau, or the current programme in the famous opera house. His precocious son took an active part in these discussions as he grew older and his curiosity increased.

His pensive look is mixed with a kind of dreaminess. He seems to be untouched by such contemporary events as had already been revealed by the violent excesses of the First World War. How could such a person know that his would be the face of one of the many victims of the century? Adorno experienced the four war years from the perspective of a schoolboy who had grown up in a family that kept its distance from the wave of patriotic war fever and rampant nationalist arrogance. Nevertheless, like other boys of his age he read the Pocket Guide to the World’s Navies and dreamed of becoming the captain of a warship.

This was thanks in part to the large volumes in landscape format that the bookbinder had bound uniformly in green. They seemed to have been made for the express purpose of turning their pages, and I was allowed to turn the pages long before I could read the notes, just following my memory and my sense of hearing. They even included Beethoven violin sonatas in curious adaptations. I have internalized many pieces, such as Mozart’s G minor symphony, so deeply that it still seems to me today that no orchestra can ever reproduce the excitement of that introductory quaver movement as perfectly as the questionable touch of the child on the piano.

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Adorno: A Biography by Stefan Müller-Doohm


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