In Times of Crisis: Essays on European Culture, Germans, by Steven E. Aschheim

By Steven E. Aschheim

The 19th- and twentieth-century courting among ecu tradition, German heritage, and the Jewish adventure produced the various West's strongest and enduring highbrow creations-and, maybe in subtly paradoxical and interrelated methods, our century's darkest genocidal moments. In occasions of quandary explores the flashpoints of this vexed courting, mapping the coordinates of a fancy triangular come upon of large historic import. In essays that variety from the query of Nietzsche's legacy to the debate over Daniel Goldhagen's Hitler's prepared Executioners, the prestigious historian Steven E. Aschheim provides this stumble upon as an ongoing discussion among evolving cultural identities. He touches on prior dimensions of this trade (such because the politics of Weimar Germany) and on current dilemmas of greedy and representing it (such because the Israeli discourse at the Holocaust). His paintings unavoidably strains the roots and ramifications of Nazism yet whilst brings into concentration old conditions and modern matters usually overshadowed or distorted via the Holocaust. those essays demonstrate the ever present of Nazi genocide inside of our personal tradition and remove darkness from the initiatives of a few later thinkers and historians-from Hannah Arendt to George Mosse to Saul Friedlander-who have wrestled with its problematics and sought to trap its essence. From the largely ancient to the private, from the politics of Weimar Germany to the adventure of growing to be up German Jewish in South Africa, the essays extend our realizing of German Jewish heritage specifically, but additionally of historic strategies mostly.

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Extra resources for In Times of Crisis: Essays on European Culture, Germans, and Jews

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The desire . . to find . . 33 Contemporary feminist Nietzscheanism may have its own particular emphases, but we should remind ourselves it is no new creation. 35 It may be salutary to remember that historically there have been feminist Nietzscheans of all stripes. For example, the futurist vitalist Valentine de Saint-Point, who sought “to make lust into a work of art” and who argued that after battle “it is normal for the victors, to turn to rape in the conquered land, so that life may be re-created,” ¨ bermensch into a new myth of the masculintranslated the notion of the U ized superwoman.

62 In their reading, bourgeois sociology becomes the very incarnation of this kind of instrumental reason, defined as a form of false consciousness. 63 It treated “society, potentially the self-determining subject, as if it were an object, and could be determined from outside . . ” 64 Indeed, it was in order to construct a kind of dialectical anti-positivist counter-sociology, which they dubbed “Critical Theory,” that their alternative Institute for Social Research was founded in 1923. While the Frankfurt School rejected positivistic sociology on the redemptive (albeit fragile) grounds of an as yet historically unrealized emancipatory dialectic, Leo Strauss dismissed it in favor of a resurrected premodern notion of enduring rationality and natural right.

For the Critical Theorists, “society” was a bourgeois idea that contained both emerging, progressive, and later regressive moments: “The concept of society, itself,” Adorno and Horkheimer proclaimed, “. . was formulated only in the course of the rise of the modern bourgeoisie as ‘society’ proper in contrast to the court. ” They hastened to point out, of course, that consciousness of “sociation” was of ancient provenance. But there it “had the character of something that existed for itself, something substantial and unproblematic, something predominating in relation to .

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