By Stefan Müller-Doohm
'Even the biographical person is a social category', wrote Adorno. 'It can basically be outlined in a dwelling context including others.' during this significant new biography, Stefan Muller-Doohm turns this maxim again on Adorno himself and gives a wealthy and finished account of the lifestyles and paintings of 1 of the main extraordinary minds of the 20 th century.
This authoritative biography levels around the complete of Adorno's lifestyles and occupation, from his adolescence and scholar years to his years in emigration within the usa and his go back to postwar Germany. whilst, Muller-Doohm examines the whole variety of Adorno's writings on philosophy, sociology, literary idea, song idea and cultural feedback. Drawing on an array of assets from Adorno's own correspondence with Horkheimer, Benjamin, Berg, Marcuse, Kracauer and Mann to interviews, notes and either released and unpublished writings, Muller-Doohm situates Adorno's contributions within the context of his occasions and gives a wealthy and balanced appraisal of his value within the twentieth Century as a complete.
Muller-Doohm's transparent prose succeeds in making obtainable one of the most complicated parts of Adorno's idea. This notable biography often is the ordinary paintings on Adorno for years yet to come.
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Extra resources for Adorno: A Biography
After all, such a union fell well outside the expectations of the afﬂuent Jewish commercial middle class. The business orientation of such families suggests that there may well have been objections and reservations. However, Oscar was man enough to get his own way, and in all probability his sisters would have given him moral support. It was surely necessary for him to assert himself, since his new family was intended to include not just his ﬁancée, Maria, but also her younger sister Agathe, who became a member of the new Wiesengrund household from the outset.
In 1817 the prince bishop of Würzburg decreed that the Jews of the region should change their names. 2 His ﬁrst son, Bernhard, was a cooper by trade, and in 1837 he took over his father’s wine-merchant business. The younger brother, David, inherited his father’s imposing house, but soon afterwards moved to Würzburg, where he died in 1861. The well-established wine business belonging to the young merchant and master-cooper Bernhard Wiesengrund (1801–71) evidently had a bright future. However, since he was able to increase his already considerable inheritance, and had become wealthy, and since there were too many competing 14 Part I: Origins Figure 1 Bernhard Wiesengrund, wine wholesaler of Frankfurt am Main (estd 1822), extends a hearty invitation to its honoured guests wine-merchants in the vicinity, he soon abandoned the small-town milieu and moved together with his wife, Caroline, née Hoffmann (1812–89), in order to set himself up in a major centre of commerce and free trade: the city of Frankfurt, with its important trade fairs.
It is not presents that are the cause, but transformed existence. The perfume that the lady visitor puts down on the chest of drawers while he is allowed to watch her unpacking has a scent that resembles memory even though he breathes it for the ﬁrst time. The cases with the labels from the Suvretta Hotel and Madonna di Campiglio are chests in which the jewels of Aladdin and Ali Baba, wrapped in precious tissues – the guest’s kimonos – are borne hither from the caravanserais of Switzerland and the South Tyrol in sleeping-car sedan chairs for his glutted contemplation.
Adorno: A Biography by Stefan Müller-Doohm