Catalogue


Heritage of our times /
Ernst Bloch ; translated by Neville and Stephen Plaice.
imprint
Berkeley : University of California Press, 1991, c1990.
description
xiv, 377 p. ; 24 cm.
ISBN
0520070577 (hard) 0520070585 (pbk.)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Berkeley : University of California Press, 1991, c1990.
isbn
0520070577 (hard) 0520070585 (pbk.)
general note
Translation of: Erbschaft dieser Zeit.
catalogue key
2975817
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
Excerpts
Flap Copy
"Although it has neither the prophetic energy of Spirit of Utopia nor the serene immensity of The Principle of Hope, Heritage of Our Times is in many ways Ernst Bloch's richest and most satisfying book, and an excellent place for the newcomer to begin. The implacable effort to understand history and the Nazi triumph gives weight and density to a characteristic mixture of experience, impression, aesthetic reflection, philosophical statement, and Utopian and political pronouncement. The crucial concept developed in this volume--'non-contemporaneity' or the so-called 'synchronicity of the non-synchronous'--has become an indispensable intellectual instrument of grasping modernity."--Fredric R. Jameson, Duke University "Brilliant in its insights, illuminating of complex cultural conflicts . . . Heritage of Our Times explores the question of how 'hope' for the future can be justified in the face of violent dislocations, social, cultural, and political to which modernizing societies are inevitably subjected."--Hayden White, University of California, Santa Cruz
Flap Copy
"Although it has neither the prophetic energy of Spirit of Utopia nor the serene immensity of The Principle of Hope , Heritage of Our Times is in many ways Ernst Bloch's richest and most satisfying book, and an excellent place for the newcomer to begin. The implacable effort to understand history and the Nazi triumph gives weight and density to a characteristic mixture of experience, impression, aesthetic reflection, philosophical statement, and Utopian and political pronouncement. The crucial concept developed in this volume--'non-contemporaneity' or the so-called 'synchronicity of the non-synchronous'--has become an indispensable intellectual instrument of grasping modernity."--Fredric R. Jameson, Duke University "Brilliant in its insights, illuminating of complex cultural conflicts . . . Heritage of Our Times explores the question of how 'hope' for the future can be justified in the face of violent dislocations, social, cultural, and political to which modernizing societies are inevitably subjected."--Hayden White, University of California, Santa Cruz
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1992-06:
Bloch's incisive critique of Weimar culture, published while he was in exile from Germany in 1935, finally appears in English as the first in an auspicious new series. Bloch's keen sociological, philosophical, and analytical insights, informed by his unorthodox utopian Marxist views, yield a probing account of many vibrant currents (chiefly Expressionism and "New Objectivity") in the arts of the period (including painting, jazz, theater, and the cinema). For Bloch, the 1920s were profoundly divided: even as regnant bourgeois institutions and forms lapsed into decay, a new and he hoped proletarian age was simultaneously coming into being. For Bloch, different orders of temporal and cultural experience "non-contemporaneously" coexisted in a kaleidoscopic present constituted as social reality through a process akin to cinematic "montage." Bloch's multifaceted comprehension of Weimar culture aimed to make possible political interventions in a cultural realm already under Nazi domination. His urgent task was to reclaim for the Left an artistic heritage, including the novel art of cinema, in order to better capture working-class imaginations. Though unsuccessful at the time, this critique has remained a major document that sheds new light on such crucial books as S. Kracauer's The Mass Ornament (soon to be released in English) as well as his classic From Caligari to Hitler (1947). Many of Bloch's concerns also intriguingly anticipate positions of important contemporary German film theorist/directors such as Kluge and Syberberg. Bloch's formulations are occasionally cryptic, often vividly poetic. At times the sense of his text is awkwardly rendered by the translators, but advanced students of Weimar culture now have an indispensable and most welcome scholarly resource.-S. Liebman, Queens College, CUNY
Appeared in Library Journal on 1991-04-01:
In this montage of essays, first published in 1935, the Marxist philosopher explained the rise of German fascism in terms of primitive and archaic survivals in modern society (such as racism and pagan beliefs) and manifestations unique to a mass capitalistic society (such as adoration of movie stars and dance marathons). He also explored using these irrational elements to further the aims of socialism and devoted attention to phenomena that seem capable of aiding the development of a progressive consciousness. Although the translators are to be praised for their attempt at rendering this insightful study into English, their overly literal adherence to Bloch's oblique German style and occasionally confusing Britishisms make it difficult to recommend this work to anyone but the specialist.-- Michael T. O'Pecko, Towson State Univ., Md. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Reviews
This item was reviewed in:
Library Journal, April 1991
Choice, June 1992
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Long Description
First published in Switzerland in 1935 and now available for the first time in English translation, Heritage of Our Times is a bold work of cultural criticism by a major twentieth-century German philosopher. Recalling work by Walter Benjamin and the Frankfurt School, Ernst Bloch's study of everyday life and politics during the Weimar Republic and Nazi Germany is a brilliant historical analysis of the cultural conditions leading to German fascism. A half-century later, Bloch's prescient meditations on culture and politics still retain their explosive power and are certain to provoke controversy and discussion among cultural critics, philosophers, social theorists, and historians. In their Introduction, the translators contextualize the book within the political and intellectual tendencies of the period and Bloch's other work.

This information is provided by a service that aggregates data from review sources and other sources that are often consulted by libraries, and readers. The University does not edit this information and merely includes it as a convenience for users. It does not warrant that reviews are accurate. As with any review users should approach reviews critically and where deemed necessary should consult multiple review sources. Any concerns or questions about particular reviews should be directed to the reviewer and/or publisher.

  link to old catalogue

Report a problem