Dark Matter: In Defiance of Catastrophic Modernity: A Fieldguide to Alexander Kluge and Oskar Negt (Paperback)

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Unravelling the thought of Alexander Kluge and Oskar Negt

Collaborators for more than four decades, lawyer, author, filmmaker, and multimedia artist Alexander Kluge and social philosopher Oskar Negt are an exceptional duo in the history of Critical Theory precisely because their respective disciplines think so differently. Dark Matter argues that what makes their contributions to the Frankfurt School so remarkable is how they think together in spite of these differences. Kluge and Negt's "gravitational thinking" balances not only the abstractions of theory with the concreteness of the aesthetic, but also their allegiances to Frankfurt School mentors with their fascination for other German, French, and Anglo-American thinkers distinctly outside the Frankfurt tradition.

At the core of all their adventures in gravitational thinking is a profound sense that the catastrophic conditions of modern life are not humankind's unalterable fate. In opposition to modernity's disastrous state of affairs, Kluge and Negt regard the huge mass of dark matter throughout the universe as the lodestar for thinking together with others, for dark matter is that absolute guarantee that happier alternatives to our calamitous world are possible. As illustrated throughout Langston's study, dark matter's promise--its critical orientation out of catastrophic modernity--finds its expression, above all, in Kluge's multimedia aesthetic.

About the Author


Richard Langston is Professor of German Literature at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is the editor of Difference and Orientation: An Alexander Kluge Reader, the author of Visions of Violence: German Avant-Gardes after Fascism, lead translator of Kluge and Oskar Negt's History and Obstinacy, and co-editor of the Alexander Kluge-Jahrbuch.


Product Details
ISBN: 9781788735179
ISBN-10: 178873517X
Publisher: Verso
Publication Date: August 4th, 2020
Pages: 368
Language: English