Weimar Modernism

Weimar Modernism : Philosophy, Politics, and Culture in Germany

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In this work David Durst explores the development of modernism in the philosophy, politics, and culture of the first German Republic between 1918 and 1933. Through a reasoned critique of various Weimar intellectual figures such as Ernst Bloch, Martin Heidegger, and Theodor Adorno, Durst offers clarity and insight into the various aesthetic postures of the interwar period. From the cultural vibrancy of the early Weimar period to the eventual decay towards fascism and Nazi rule,Weimar Modernism provides a new and coherent way to examine this important era, which has often been presented in a fragmented manner.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 254 pages
  • 147.3 x 226.1 x 17.8mm | 317.52g
  • Lexington Books
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 0739110063
  • 9780739110065

Review quote

David Durst's Weimar Modernism is a major accomplishment, providing an anatomy of Weimar culture, an intellectual history of Critical Theory, and a penetrating analysis of cultural modernity, broadly understood. Durst shows why Weimar remains the litmus test of modernism and how the response of thinkers such as Bloch, Lukacs, Adorno, and Benjamin are indispensable to cultural analyses of the twentieth century. Durst succeeds as well in demonstrating the significance of conservative authors such as Junger and Schmitt for a full understanding of modernism. A rich and erudite study, Weimar Modernism sets a new benchmark in our understanding of Weimar culture and modern culture in general. -- Russell Berman, Stanford University It is an enriching survey of an intellectual discourse in one of the most fascinating periods in the history of modern thought and culture. H-Net: Humanities and Social Science Reviews Online Recommended. CHOICE If the reader has a thirst to learn more about the development of modernism in the philosophy, politics, and culture of the Weimar Republic, then this is the book. David C. Durst offers an astute analysis of modernism, the cultural logic of capitalism in its second phase of expansion (xxii), and how the contradictions in capitalist development and older political beliefs manifested themselves to the extreme in modern Germany...a well-articulated and researched study of the period, particularly for those who specialize in Weimar and philosophy. German Studies Review It succeeds as an in-depth historical approach to various manifestations of Weimar modernism. It effectively- and quite properly- challenges traditional polarities such as right vs. left or apolitical vs. engaged, especially in the chapters on Lukacs, Schmitt and Junger...a valuable contribution to the scholarship on Weimar modernism and its philosophical discourses. The German Quarterly Weimar Modernism is clearly an important study. Durst's achievement resides both in his impressive synthetic grasp of complex aesthetic movements of the interwar period as well as in the analytic acumen he employs to correct prevailing misconceptions. Weimar Modernism provides a cohesive narrative to a field that has often been presented in a very fragmented manner. Never in this intellectual history does one encounter simplification-Expressionism, Dada, Heidegger and Junger, to name but a few of the figures and movements in this Weimar gallery,all receive their just due. Weimar Modernism is tremendously instructive, insightful and balanced. -- William Collins Donahue, Rutgers Universityshow more

About David C. Durst

David Durst is Associate Professor of Philosophy at American University in Bulgaria.show more

Table of contents

Chapter 1 Introduction: Weimar Modernism Chapter 2 Ernst Bloch's Theory of Nonsimultaneity Chapter 3 Berlin Dada, Carl Schmitt, Georg Lukacs and the Critique of Contemplation Chapter 4 From Contemplation to Distraction. The Culture of Inflation and the Inflation of Culture Chapter 5 The Art of Disappearance: Adorno's Aesthetics of Modernism and Alban Berg's Music Chapter 6 From Distraction to Mobilization: Ernst Junger, Photography, and the Imperial Gaze of the Worker Chapter 7 From Mobilization to Interruption: Dialectic at a Standstill or Walter Benjamin on the Politicization of the Aesthetic in Brecht's Epic Theatershow more