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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 1968 - Philosophy - 278 pages
81 Reviews
Walter Benjamin was one of the most original cultural critics of the twentieth century. Illuminations includes his views on Kafka, with whom he felt a close personal affinity; his studies on Baudelaire and Proust; and his essays on Leskov and on Brecht's Epic Theater. Also included are his penetrating study "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction," an enlightening discussion of translation as a literary mode, and Benjamin's theses on the philosophy of history.

Hannah Arendt selected the essays for this volume and introduces them with a classic essay about Benjamin's life in dark times. Also included is a new preface by Leon Wieseltier that explores Benjamin's continued relevance for our times.

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Beautiful, dark prose. - Goodreads
It's worth it for Arendt's introduction alone. - Goodreads
I read the entire Introduction by Hannah Arendt. - Goodreads
It's a model form of critical essay writing. - Goodreads
This is how one pictures the angel of history. - Goodreads

Review: Illuminations: Essays and Reflections

User Review  - Lukas Legend - Goodreads

While I anticipated "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction" (located at the back of my version) to be my favourite essay, I worked through "Illuminations" and was more blown away by ... Read full review

Review: Illuminations: Essays and Reflections

User Review  - Jonfaith - Goodreads

For every second of time was the strait gate through which the Messiah might enter. There are hardly enough superlatives for this amazing collection of essays concerning Baudelaire, Proust, Kafka ... Read full review


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About the author (1968)

Walter Benjamin is recognized as one of the most acute analysts of literary and sociological phenomena of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. He died in 1940.

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