Reason and Horror: Critical Theory, Democracy and Aesthetic by Morton Schoolman PDF
By Morton Schoolman
Morton Schoolman develops a desirable and fully new interpretation of the paintings of Horkenheimer and Adorno.
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Additional info for Reason and Horror: Critical Theory, Democracy and Aesthetic Individuality
While Whitman’s poetry offers individuality a model of aesthetic representation that incorporates Nietzsche’s vantage point on aesthetic creativity and Adorno’s sensibility to violence in the way creativity forms the world, it also provides a model of aesthetic “presentation” whose ethic is no differently principled. Whereas chapter 6 maps the aesthetics of individuality modeled on Whitman’s poetic forms of representation, chapter 7 considers his poetry as a model for how individuality creates, or presents, the self through the images in which others and the world can be aesthetically represented.
Odysseus becomes enlightenment’s proper metaphor and illuminates not only decisive stages in the history of enlightenment but the actual forces that are expressed at each of these stages, the struggles through which these forces play themselves out, and the principles consolidated in the resolution of these struggles. 18 Odysseus discovers a way to become aesthetically receptive to the lures of the Sirens while protecting himself from their dangers and insulating his men from their temptations so that he can give himself up to the promise of happiness the demigodesses represent.
If it were not for a certain innocence in his enthusiastic embrace of technological progress, the philosophic motifs that in all their poetic variations spring from Whitman’s recognition of the unknown would qualify him as no less an opponent of the Enlightenment than Nietzsche and Adorno. Whitman’s conviction that the world is unfathomable is evident from arguments he frames poetically. As its animating principle, the unknown enables the poet to form images distinguishing between the depths, the fathomless qualities, of the world’s diversity of differences, and the surfaces of differences through which poetic creativity is to unfold.
Reason and Horror: Critical Theory, Democracy and Aesthetic Individuality by Morton Schoolman