Weimar Thought: A Contested Legacy

Overview

During its short lifespan, the Weimar Republic (1918-33) witnessed an unprecedented flowering of achievements in many areas, including psychology, political theory, physics, philosophy, literary and cultural criticism, and the arts. Leading intellectuals, scholars, and critics--such as Hannah Arendt, Walter Benjamin, Ernst Bloch, Bertolt Brecht, and Martin Heidegger--emerged during this time to become the foremost thinkers of the twentieth century. Even today, the Weimar era remains a vital resource for new ...

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Weimar Thought: A Contested Legacy

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Overview

During its short lifespan, the Weimar Republic (1918-33) witnessed an unprecedented flowering of achievements in many areas, including psychology, political theory, physics, philosophy, literary and cultural criticism, and the arts. Leading intellectuals, scholars, and critics--such as Hannah Arendt, Walter Benjamin, Ernst Bloch, Bertolt Brecht, and Martin Heidegger--emerged during this time to become the foremost thinkers of the twentieth century. Even today, the Weimar era remains a vital resource for new intellectual movements. In this incomparable collection, Weimar Thought presents both the specialist and the general reader a comprehensive guide and unified portrait of the most important innovators, themes, and trends of this fascinating period.

The book is divided into four thematic sections: law, politics, and society; philosophy, theology, and science; aesthetics, literature, and film; and general cultural and social themes of the Weimar period. The volume brings together established and emerging scholars from a remarkable array of fields, and each individual essay serves as an overview for a particular discipline while offering distinctive critical engagement with relevant problems and debates.

Whether used as an introductory companion or advanced scholarly resource, Weimar Thought provides insight into the rich developments behind the intellectual foundations of modernity.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"By seeking understanding and refraining from evaluative synthesis, every contribution in this volume prompts the reader to reflect on lessons of Weimar in light of the present social, political, and cultural situation. Its innovative methodological outlook and its numerous field-specific interventions make Weimar Thought an indispensible resource for any future studies of the epoch."--Dennis Johanssen, German Quarterly

"This sophisticated compendium of 19 essays by leading scholars in history, cultural studies, political science, and philosophy attempts to address the complexity, importance, and legacy of one of the 20th century's most important eras of intellectual activity. . . . [T]hese intellectual histories are not very connected to context, providing instead effective overviews and suggesting some new ways to consider intellectual giants of the 20th century. That feat is impressive and valuable."--Choice

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780691135106
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Publication date: 6/30/2013
  • Pages: 460
  • Sales rank: 785,363
  • Product dimensions: 6.50 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author


Peter E. Gordon is the Amabel B. James Professor of History at Harvard University. His books include "Continental Divide" and "Rosenzweig and Heidegger". John P. McCormick is professor of political science at the University of Chicago. His books include "Machiavellian Democracy" and "Weber, Habermas, and Transformations of the European State".
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Table of Contents


Introduction: Weimar Thought: Continuity and Crisis 1
Peter E. Gordon and John P. McCormick
Part I: Law, Politics, Society
1 Weimar Sociology 15
David Kettler and Colin Loader
2 Weimar Psychology: Holistic Visions and Trained Intuition 35
Mitchell G. Ash
3 Legal Theory and the Weimar Crisis of Law and Social Change 55
John P. McCormick
4 The Legacy of Max Weber in Weimar Political and Social Theory 73
Dana Villa
Part II: Philosophy, Theology, Science
5 Kulturphilosophie in Weimar Modernism 101
John Michael Krois
6 Weimar Philosophy and the Fate of Neo-Kantianism 115
Frederick Beiser
7 Weimar Philosophy and the Crisis of Historical Thinking 133
Charles Bambach
8 Weimar Theology: From Historicism to Crisis 150
Peter E. Gordon
9 Method, Moment, and Crisis in Weimar Science 179
Cathryn Carson
Part III: Aesthetics, Literature, Film
10 Walter Benjamin, Siegfried Kracauer, and Weimar Criticism 203
Michael Jennings
11 Writers and Politics in the Weimar Republic 220
Karin Gunnemann
12 Aesthetic Fundamentalism in Weimar Poetry: Stefan George and his Circle, 1918-1933 240
Martin A. Ruehl
13 Weimar Film Theory 273
Sabine Hake
14 The Politics of Art and Architecture at the Bauhaus, 1919-1933 291
John V. Maciuika
15 Aby Warburg and the Secularization of the Image 316
Michael P. Steinberg
Part IV: Themes of an Epoch
16 Eastern Wisdom in an Era of Western Despair: Orientalism in 1920s Central Europe 341
Susanne Marchand
17 Weimar Femininity: Within and Beyond the Law 361
Tracie Matysik
18 The Weimar Left: Theory and Practice 377
Martin Jay
19 The Aftermath: Reflections on the Culture and Ideology of National Socialism 394
Anson Rabinbach
Weimar Thought: A Chronology 407
Contributors 417
Index 423
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