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Walter Benjamin

The Consolation of History in a Paris Exile

Patrick H. Hutton

Walter Benjamin, a Jewish German literary critic of modest reputation during the interwar years, has become an intellectual celebrity in our times. In flight from Nazi Germany, he took refuge in Paris during the 1930s before dying in 1940 in a vain effort to escape to America. In this essay, I analyze his ideas as conceived in his Paris exile, with particular attention to his turn to the topics of memory and of history and of the relationship between them. I close with some thoughts on how his ideas about memory's redeeming power played into the humanist Marxism of the intellectuals of the 1960s and subsequently the preoccupation with memory in late twentieth-century scholarship.

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In the Footsteps of Walter Benjamin

Michael D. Jackson

In 2003, anthropologist and poet Michael Jackson went to French Catalonia with the intention of crossing the Pyrenees on the anniversary of Walter Benjamin's fateful journey on 25-26 September 1940. Retracing Benjamin's steps over a tortuous terrain of vineyards, stony paths and Mediterranean maquis, Jackson meditates on the life and work of the great twentieth-century philosopher, critical theorist, and essayist, as well as on the ways that events beyond our control or comprehension impact on and shape the course of our individual journeys through life.

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Die Metropole als Hypertext: Zur netzhaften Essaystik in Walter Benjamins "Passagen-Projekt"

Willi Bolle

Die für Bertolt Brechts Stück Mahagonny (1929) zentrale Metapher der "Netzestadt" soll hier dazu verwendet werden, den Kompositionsstil von Walter Benjamins Passagen-Projekt (1927-1940) im Sinne einer netzhaften Essayistik zu erklären. Dieser methodologische Transfer ist nicht kausalgenetisch begründet (dass etwa Benjamins Schreibweise von Brecht beeinflusst worden wäre), sondern er beruht auf einer ästhetischen Wahlverwandtschaft. Mit der Metapher des netzhaften Schreibens läßt sich die von Benjamin entwickelte wissenschaftliche Großstadt-Essayistik besonders treffend charakterisieren.

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Death on repeat

Violence, viral images and questioning the rule of law in Brazilian favelas

Jason B. Scott

the creation of collective meanings. Walter Benjamin (1968) describes this process in terms of an ‘aura’ that is created by an original work of art that is situated in a specific social context, time and place. Reproductive technologies such as

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Bodies with Objects in Space through Screens

Casual Virtuality and the Self-Mediation of Laura Paolini's Constraining Aesthetics

Jakub Zdebik

images through the writings of Walter Benjamin, Brian Massumi, Benjamin Buchloh, Craig Owens, Amelia Jones, Gaston Bachelard, and Gilles Deleuze, I propose to access a pandemic aesthetic established by the artist network of body, objects, and space

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Phantasmagoria of the global learner: Unlikely global learners and the hierarchy of learning

Neriko Musha Doerr

sociocultural conditions and power politics among those involved, I argue that the notion of global learner acts as what Walter Benjamin calls a phantasmagoria: ‘a magic-lantern show of optical illusions’ ( Buck-Morss 1997: 81 ). The notion of phantasmagoria

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From Progression to Explosion

Historical Time and Revolutionary Change in Marx, Gramsci, Benjamin, and Fanon

Ludvig Sunnemark

alternative socio-theoretical canon which has worked in close dialogue with Marxist theory – namely, for this article, Antonio Gramsci, Walter Benjamin, and Frantz Fanon. This builds from the realisation that the aforementioned triangular relationship has

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From Schmitt to Foucault

Inquiring the Relationship between Exception and Democracy

Sara Raimondi

. Benjamin , Walter . 1996 . “ Critique of Violence. ” Pp. 236 – 252 in Walter Benjamin: Selected Writings, vol. 1: 1913–1926 , ed. Marcus Bullock and Michael Jennings . Cambridge : Harvard University Press . Camp Keith , Linda , and Steven

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On Shock Therapy

Modernist Aesthetics and American Underground Film

William Solomon

sensory anesthesia” (302). The specific contribution of Walter Benjamin’s canonical essay “On Some Motifs in Baudelaire” to this topic is that it makes a speculative yet compelling case for considering a shock aesthetic as a way of training the senses of

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Introduction: From Concord to Peace

Andrew Benjamin and Francesco Borghesi

culture as that which demands to be thought. 2 And yet culture is neither tranquil nor unified. As Walter Benjamin argued, there ‘is no document of culture which is not at the same time a document of barbarism’. 3 Allowing for culture's centrality