Adorno: A Biography

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John Wiley & Sons, Nov 7, 2014 - Biography & Autobiography - 648 pages
'Even the biographical individual is a social category', wrote Adorno. ‘It can only be defined in a living context together with others.’ In this major new biography, Stefan Müller-Doohm turns this maxim back on Adorno himself and provides a rich and comprehensive account of the life and work of one of the most brilliant minds of the twentieth century.

This authoritative biography ranges across the whole of Adorno's life and career, from his childhood and student years to his years in emigration in the United States and his return to postwar Germany. At the same time, Muller-Doohm examines the full range of Adorno's writings on philosophy, sociology, literary theory, music theory and cultural criticism. Drawing on an array of sources from Adorno's personal correspondence with Horkheimer, Benjamin, Berg, Marcuse, Kracauer and Mann to interviews, notes and both published and unpublished writings, Muller-Doohm situates Adorno's contributions in the context of his times and provides a rich and balanced appraisal of his significance in the 20th Century as a whole.

Müller-Doohm's clear prose succeeds in making accessible some of the most complex areas of Adorno's thought. This outstanding biography will be the standard work on Adorno for years to come.


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Origins Family Childhood and Youth School and University in Frankfurt am Main
A Change of Scene Between Frankfurt Vienna and Berlin A Profusion of Intellectual Interests
Emigration Years An Intellectual in a Foreign Land
Thinking the Unconditional and Enduring the Conditional

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About the author (2014)

Stefan Müller-Doohm isProfessor of Sociology at Oldenburg University, Germany.

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