By Brian O’Connor

Theodor W. Adorno (1903-69) was once one of many most excellent philosophers and social theorists of the post-war interval. the most important to the improvement of severe concept, his hugely unique and distinct yet frequently tricky writings not just enhance questions of primary philosophical value, yet supply deep-reaching analyses of literature, paintings, tune sociology and political theory.

In this accomplished creation, Brian O’Connor explains Adorno’s philosophy for these coming to his paintings for the 1st time, via unique new strains of interpretation. starting with an outline of Adorno’s lifestyles and key philosophical perspectives and affects, which contextualizes the highbrow atmosphere within which he labored, O’Connor assesses the primary parts of Adorno’s philosophy.

He rigorously examines Adorno’s certain variety of research and indicates how a lot of his paintings is a serious reaction to some of the sorts of id pondering that experience underpinned the damaging forces of modernity. He is going directly to speak about the most parts of Adorno’s philosophy: social idea, the philosophy of expertise, metaphysics, morality and aesthetics; commencing distinctive debts of Adorno’s notions of the dialectic of Enlightenment, reification, totality, mediation, identification, nonidentity, adventure, destructive dialectics, immanence, freedom, autonomy, imitation and autonomy in artwork. the ultimate bankruptcy considers Adorno’s philosophical legacy and value today.

Including a chronology, word list, bankruptcy summaries, and recommendations for extra interpreting, Adorno is a perfect creation to this challenging yet very important philosopher, and crucial studying for college students of philosophy, literature, sociology and cultural studies.

“Introductions reminiscent of Brian O’Connor’s Adorno are a style of their personal correct with their right calls for. ... O’Connor’s sort is cautious, mercifully jargon-free, and well suited for the style. he's not seduced into emulating Adorno’s scintillating kind, and he handles Adorno’s abstruse ideas with perception and dexterity.” —James Gordon Finlayson, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

“O’Connor’s e-book stands proud as a very lucid and trustworthy creation to a notoriously tough philosopher. i will think about no examine of this sort that so elegantly and successfully explores Adorno’s inspiration and its relevance to our personal time.” —Espen Hammer, Temple collage, USA

“This long-awaited creation is a perfect place to begin for a person drawn to Adorno’s wealthy and hard paintings. O’Connor succeeds in combining accessibility with philosophical sophistication and interpretative nuance. He unlocks significant problems with which Adorno’s writings provides us and demonstrates the long-lasting value of non-identity thinking.” —Fabian Freyenhagen, college of Essex, UK

“This is definitely the simplest advent to Adorno on hand, and will be steered to a person hoping to familiarize themselves with this tough and worthwhile philosopher.” —Owen Hulatt, Unversity of York, UK

“This publication is a such a lot great addition to the Routledge Philosophers sequence. Brian O’Connor’s narrow quantity could be the main concise but wide-ranging of all introductions to Theodor W. Adorno’s (1903–1969) notion presently in print this day. O’Connor’s textual content merits a place at the shelf of an individual who's drawn to the Frankfurt university regularly or Adorno particularly. those who find themselves drawn to studying extra concerning the thinker through the identify of Adorno will be clever to select this ebook up.” —Patrick Gamsby, Brandeis collage, USA

“...this new advent is lucid and gripping...In specific, it truly is very good in bringing out the importance of Adorno’s criticisms of identity-thinking, that are too usually brushed off as obscure.” —Koshka Duff, Marx & Philosophy overview of Books

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The operative rules of the totality, beliefs which regulate our behaviour even though we do not realize we hold them – is quite unlike material objects or events that can, indeed, be used to test empirical hypotheses. To assume that social material is a species of physical material is already to have reduced it to something easily understood. The correct approach requires that ‘the material – the phenomena – is interpreted in accordance with its own predetermined structure’ (IPD 7). Were interpretation of social phenomena to be pursued in this way no conclusions could be drawn in advance.

Adorno rejects that procedure on the grounds of its inappropriateness for social analysis. He writes: ‘Concepts such as that of hypothesis and the associated concept of testability cannot be blithely transferred from the natural to the social science’ (IPD 42). He believes that the hypothesis/testability procedure is mistaken about the character of, we can call it, social material. g. the operative rules of the totality, beliefs which regulate our behaviour even though we do not realize we hold them – is quite unlike material objects or events that can, indeed, be used to test empirical hypotheses.

No knowledge that has not been confirmed through the enquiry can be accepted. Adorno’s worry, though, is that reality takes on the character of the mode of enquiry that revealed it. If, for instance, our methodology advises us to break down reality into separable component elements it will, in its analyses and conclusions, naïvely take reality to be fundamentally atomized. This tendency to explain reality through method is, according to Adorno, driven by a desire for identity in modern theory. The distance between our knowledge and reality itself is entirely closed when we think we have succeeded in framing reality within our concepts and by means of our methods.

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