Walter Benjamin: 1935-1938 v. 3 : Selected Writings
- Walter Benjamin, Howard Eiland, Michael W. Jennings
- Hardback | 512 pages
- 168 x 240 x 29.72mm | 812g
- Publication date
- 31 Dec 2002
- HARVARD UNIVERSITY PRESS
- The Belknap Press
- Publication City/Country
- Cambridge, Mass., United States
- Edition Statement
- Annotated edition
- Bestsellers rank
Radical critic of a European civilization plunging into darkness, yet commemorator of the humane traditions of the old bourgeoisie - such was Walter Benjamin in the later 1930s. This volume, the third in a four-volume set, offers 27 pieces, 19 of which have never before been translated. The centrepiece, "A Berlin Childhood Around 1900", marks the first appearance in English of one of the greatest German works of the 20th century: a profound and beautiful account of the vanished world of Benjamin's privileged boyhood, recollected in exile. No less remarkable are the previously untranslated second version of Benjamin's most famous essay, "The Work of Art in the Age of Its Technological Reproducibility", with its striking insights into the relations between technology and aeshetics, and "German Men and Women", a book in which Benjamin collects 26 letters by distinguished Germans from 1783 to 1883 in an effort to preserve what he called the "true humanity" of German tradition from the debasement of fascism.
Volume 3 also offers extensively annotated translations of essays that are key to Benjamin's rewriting of the story of modernism and modernity - such as "The Storyteller" and "Paris, the Capital of the 19th Century" - as well as a fascinating diary from 1938 and penetrating studies of Bertolt Brecht, Franz Kafka, and Eduard Fuchs. A narrative chronology details Benjamin's life during these four harrowing years of his exile in France and Denmark. This is a valuable collection for anyone interested in his work.