The lengthy introduction by Hannah Arendt is very good, though dense.
If you have any thoughts, insights, critique on my view I appreciate any comments. I loved the preface by Hannah Arendt, gives insight into mindset and analytical style of Benjamin.
I had no idea Walter benjamin essay on proust this backstory. There are several essays on Kafka and Proust.
Makes me want to read some Proust but not sure I have the patience for it either, seems very solipsistic and maybe a different time and place in my life I would have been more intrigued This is a very good essay as it hits upon a lot of interesting insights but I have some issues.
Let me preface this by saying that I think Benjamin truly knows how to dance around and with a subject, poking and prodding it allowing him to expertly and gradually drill to core issues.
So sometimes I disagree with his tone or view, but his insights are keen.
In this realm he references Alduous Huxley, who brandishes a viewpoint I find mindblowingly elitist and aggravating to my sensibilities.
To reduce it, Huxley comes across as the type of guy who thinks only one type of person genius is fit to produce art his example is based on the art of writinghis view is that a greater amount of people creating due to greater amount of reading public has led to a high output of garbage art literally he calls it garbage!
How can one apply such qualitative assessments on what is good and therefore deserves to be made? I tend to gravitate towards things that fit my tastes based on style, technique, themes, but I also search for work where the artist seems to have managed to put some truth of their life or experience within their work which I always consider an accomplishment.
Yes it transcends mere passing of information, it is often more ethereal and abstract, nebulous. Of course I judge art based on my time, place, upbringing, experiences, views, tastes, and am influenced by the people and culture around me, but I will never say something is universally good or great, tastes wax and wane and vary across cultures, all that matters is that something speaks to us.
He is more about looking at issues and stripping the veneer off the subject matter to get a better look at it, look at how the machinery works and how it has evolved.
It is a very good essay and hits so many interesting points, and there is just so much to talk about. He seems to place traditional art forms painting on a pedestal, I feel he has a lot of nostalgia for this mode.
In his eyes the modern art techniques like film are not all bad, in fact they have a lot of potential due to the force of their democratizing possibilities, but they also feature a capacity to exploit, dominate, indoctrinate, and subjugate people. In a similar vein in these eras many paintings were commissioned by powerful elites to project power.
As Benjamin mentions this is in contrast to the moving image which by its constant flood of image after image exacts what he calls a "shock effect" on the viewer, hampering the ability to think and process the constant stream of visual info. Anyways yes I like paintings, I like the static image, but sometimes becoming too obsessed with this mythologization of object we paradoxically becoming blinded to it and what is directly in front of us!
In my estimation each medium has its own positive and negative aspects, ultimately it comes down to the creators and their ability to leverage whatever medium they choose. Maybe I miss some of his nuance even though I have to agree that some of his critiques of modern art forms are on point but the negative aspects of the critique are overemphasized vs the positive aspects, while the reverse is true for how he treats the older modes like painting.
I find him overly obsessed with the object and its materiality, and while I do think there is importance to seeing a physical piece in the flesh and witness it in its context I think he goes overboard in placing the art object in this mystical realm.
But you know, painting is all illusion too, filled with various techniques, color strategies, perspective, composition, all in the effort to create various visual illusions.
That film is created via the camera lens is a detriment in his eyes, taking away the human hand.Jan 13, · Free shipping on all U.S. orders over $10!
Overview. 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 initiativeblog.com: Proust / Benjamin Our reading of Walter Benjamins essay On the Image of Proust () focuses on a certain number of points that attracted our attention as particularly exemplary of both Proust s work and Benjamin s position towards this author.
Frequently Asked Questions Who wrote this list? See the heading above and the credit below to find out who wrote this list. If you don't like the selections in this list . New Criticism. A literary movement that started in the late s and s and originated in reaction to traditional criticism that new critics saw as largely concerned with matters extraneous to the text, e.g., with the biography or psychology of the author or the work's relationship to literary history.
Benjamin’s roundabout methods can be seen in his best-known literary essays, the examinations of Proust, Baudelaire, and Kafka published in “Illuminations.”. This essay takes up the encounter between philosophy and literature through a reconsideration of Walter Benjamin’s remarks from “On Some Motifs in Baudelaire” about Henri Bergson’s Matière et mémoire as an attempt “[t]owering above” other ventures into Lebensphilosophie to “lay hold.