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The Fleeting Promise of ArtAdorno's Aesthetic Theory Revisited$
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Peter Uwe Hohendahl

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780801452369

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801452369.001.0001

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(p.152) Epilogue
The Fleeting Promise of Art

Peter Uwe Hohendahl

Cornell University Press

This epilogue reflects on the goal and purpose of the book, which has attempted to do justice to Theodor Adorno's aesthetic theory and literary criticism by focusing on more specific problems, asking more detailed questions, and resisting established interpretations and facile generalizations of his texts. The book has challenged the notion that Adorno's theoretical oeuvre can be safely situated within the sphere of philosophy; or, more precisely, that his music and literary criticism as well as his social criticism can be understood as mere extensions of his philosophical thought. It has shown that Aesthetic Theory differs from academic aesthetics, and even the great tradition of Immanuel Kant and Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, owing to the strong presence of art criticism in Adorno's articulation of his argument. This epilogue concludes by discussing how a defense of Adorno might be undertaken today, noting that Adorno himself provides a model for such a defense in his approach to Kant.

Keywords:   aesthetics, Theodor Adorno, literary criticism, philosophy, social criticism, Aesthetic Theory, Immanuel Kant, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, art criticism, music

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