Filed under book | Tags: · 1800s, aesthetics, art, art criticism, biography, painting, paris, romanticism
“The journal of the French 19th-century Romantic painter Eugène Delacroix is one of the most important works in the literature of art history. Expressive and unselfconsciously spontaneous, it offers a compelling insight into the painter’s life and the cultural scene of 19th-century Paris (his friends and acquaintances included Géricault, Stendhal, Victor Cousin, Baudelaire, George Sand, Chopin, Hugo, and Dumas).”
Journal de Eugène Delacroix
Compiled by Paul Flat and René Piot
Publisher Plon, Paris, 1893
A Selection Edited with an Introduction Hubert Wellington
Translated by Lucy Norton
First published in 1951
Third edition, Phaidon, 1995
Reviews (of new French ed.): Wright (H-France Review, 2010), Barnes (Times Literary Supplement, 2010), O’Brien (19th-Century Art Worldwide, 2012).
Commentaries: Hannoosh (RIHA Journal, 2010, in French).
Filed under fiction | Tags: · 1940s, 1950s, existentialism, feminism, france, paris, philosophy, politics
In her famous novel, The Mandarins, Simone de Beauvoir takes an unflinching look at Parisian intellectual society at the end of World War II. In fictionally relating the stories of those around her – Jean-Paul Sartre, Albert Camus, Arthur Koestler, Nelson Algren – de Beauvoir dissects the emotional and philosophical currents of her time. At once an engrossing drama and an intriguing political tale, The Mandarins is the emotional odyssey of a woman torn between her inner desires and her public life.
First published in French as Les Mandarins, Gallimard, 1954
Translated by Leonard M. Friedman
First published in English in 1956
Publisher Harper, London, 2005
With an Introduction by Doris Lessing
Susan Buck-Morss: The Dialectics of Seeing: Walter Benjamin and the Arcades Project (1989-) [English, Spanish]
Filed under book | Tags: · 1800s, advertising, bourgeoisie, city, commodification, critical theory, cultural criticism, fashion, flaneur, history, literary criticism, literature, paris, photography, poetry
“Walter Benjamin’s magnum opus was a book he did not live to write. In The Dialectics of Seeing, Susan Buck-Morss offers an inventive reconstruction of the Passagen-Werk, or Arcades Project, as it might have taken form.
Working with Benjamin’s vast files of citations and commentary which contain a myriad of historical details from the dawn of consumer culture, Buck-Morss makes visible the conceptual structure that gives these fragments philosophical coherence. She uses images throughout the book to demonstrate that Benjamin took the debris of mass culture seriously as the source of philosophical truth.
The Paris Arcades that so fascinated Benjamin (as they did the Surrealists whose “materialist metaphysics” he admired) were the prototype, the 19th century “ur-form” of the modern shopping mall. Benjamin’s dialectics of seeing demonstrate how to read these consumer dream houses and so many other material objects of the time—from air balloons to women’s fashions, from Baudelaire’s poetry to Grandville’s cartoons—as anticipations of social utopia and, simultaneously, as clues for a radical political critique.
Buck-Morss plots Benjamin’s intellectual orientation on axes running east and west, north and south—Moscow Paris, Berlin-Naples—and shows how such thinking in coordinates can explain his understanding of “dialectics at a standstill.” She argues for the continuing relevance of Benjamin’s insights but then allows a set of “afterimages” to have the last word.”
Publisher MIT Press, 1989
Studies in Contemporary German Social Thought Series
Review (Beste Alpay, The Montréal Review)
The Dialectics of Seeing: Walter Benjamin and the Arcades Project (English, 98 MB, PDF, updated on 2019-3-25)
Dialectica de la mirada: Walter Benjamin y el proyecto de los Pasajes (Spanish, trans. Nora Rabotnikof, 1995, updated on 2013-5-2)