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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Oct 23, 1968 - Philosophy - 288 pages
7 Reviews
Walter Benjamin was one of the most original cultural critics of the twentieth century. Illuminations includes his views on Kafka, with whom he felt a close personal affinity; his studies on Baudelaire and Proust; and his essays on Leskov and on Brecht's Epic Theater. Also included are his penetrating study "The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction," an enlightening discussion of translation as a literary mode, and Benjamin's theses on the philosophy of history. Hannah Arendt selected the essays for this volume and introduces them with a classic essay about Benjamin's life in dark times. Also included is a preface by Leon Wieseltier that explores Benjamin's continued relevance for our times.

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User Review  - gregorybrown - LibraryThing

Walter Benjamin is awesome, and any difficulties I had following the work, I ascribe to the translation and to my ignorance about some of the subjects (especially Baudelaire and Proust). He's ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - frenchphenom5 - LibraryThing

So much to say about this book. One of my favorite times when i read it was when the power was cut out due to a storm, I lit a candle and proceeded to read Illuminations. Not making this up. "N ... Read full review


A Talk about Book Collecting
An Introduction to the Translation of Baudelaires Tableaux Parisiens
Reflections on the Works of Nikolai Leskov
On the Tenth Anniversary of His Death
Some Reflections on Kafka
What Is Epic Theater?
On Some Motifs in Baudelaire
The Image of Proust
The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction
Theses on the Philosophy of History
Back Matter
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About the author (1968)

WALTER BENJAMIN (1892–1940) was a German-Jewish Marxist literary critic, essayist, translator, and philosopher. He was at times associated with the Frankfurt School of critical theory and was also greatly inspired by the Marxism of Bertolt Brecht and Jewish mysticism as presented by Gershom Scholem.

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