Georg Lukacs: The Fundamental Dissonance of Existence

Georg Lukacs: The Fundamental Dissonance of Existence : Aesthetics, Politics, Literature

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The end of the Soviet period, the vast expansion in the power and influence of capital, and recent developments in social and aesthetic theory, have made the work of Hungarian Marxist philosopher and social critic Georg Lukacs more vital than ever.

The very innovations in literary method that, during the 80s and 90s, marginalized him in the West have now made possible new readings of Lukacs, less in thrall to the positions taken by Lukacs himself on political and aesthetic matters. What these developments amount to, this book argues, is an opportunity to liberate Lukacs's thought from its formal and historical limitations, a possibility that was always inherent in Lukacs's own thinking about the paradoxes of form. This collection brings together recent work on Lukacs from the fields of Philosophy, Social and Political Thought, Literary and Cultural Studies. Against the odds, Lukacs's thought has survived: as a critique of late capitalism, as a guide to the contradictions of modernity, and as a model for a temperament that refuses all accommodation with the way things are.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 256 pages
  • 156 x 234 x 13.46mm | 358g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1441164677
  • 9781441164674
  • 2,033,181

Table of contents

Acknowledgements \ Abbreviations \ Introduction: Fundamental Dissonance Timothy Bewes and Timothy Hall \ Part I: Paradoxes of Form \ 1. Temporalized Invariance: Lukacs and the Work of Form, Yoon Sun Lee \ 2. How to Escape from Literature? Lukacs, Cinema, and The Theory of the Novel, Timothy Bewes \ 3. Capitalist and Bourgeois Epics: Lukacs, Abstraction and the Novel, David Cunningham \ 4. Typing Class: Classification and Redemption in Lukacs's Political and Literary Theory, Patrick Eiden-Offe \ Part II: Life, History, Social Theory \ 5. Lukacs sans Proletariat, or Can History and Class Consciousness be Re-historicized? Neil Larsen \ 6. Rethinking Reification, Andrew Feenberg \ 7. Justice and the Good Life in Lukacs's History and Class Consciousness, Timothy Hall \ 8. Capitalist Life in Lukacs, Stewart Martin \ Part III: Aesthetic Reframings \ 9. Art for Art's Sake and Proletarian Writing, Georg Lukacs 10. The Historical and Political Context of Lukacs's 'Art for Art's Sake and Proletarian Writing', Andrew Hemingway \ 11. 'Fascinating Delusive Light': Georg Lukacs and Franz Kafka, Michael Loewy \ 12. The Historical Novel After Lukacs, John Marx \ 13. Realism, Totality, and the Militant Citoyen: Or, What Does Lukacs Have to Do With Contemporary Art? Gail Day \ Appendix \ 14. An Entire Epoch of Inhumanity (1964 Preface to Probleme des Realismus, III), Georg Lukacs \ Contributors \ Index
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Review quote

"Materialist and formalist, realist and utopian, ontological and prophetic, militant and rebel, Gyoergy Lukacs remains a disturbing oxymoron to be interpreted - therefore transformed. In truly dialectical and dialogical manner, this books succeeds in doing just that, burying the verdicts of obsolescence, illuminating the ambivalences, and making again of the "principle of totality" which traverses the philosopher's writings a category for radically overturning an alienated society." -- Etienne Balibar, author (with Louis Althusser) of Reading Capital Reviewed in Radical Philosophy 171.
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About Timothy Hall

Timothy Hall is Senior Lecturer in the Department of International Politics at the University of East London, UK. He is co-author of The Modern State: theories and ideologies (Edinburgh University Press, 2007).
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