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Adorno on Hope

Jütten, Timo (2019) 'Adorno on Hope.' Philosophy and Social Criticism, 45 (3). 284 - 306. ISSN 0191-4537

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Abstract

I argue that Theodor W. Adorno’s philosophy articulates a radical conception of hope. According to Lear, radical hope is ‘directed toward a future goodness that transcends the current ability to understand what it is’ (2006:103). Given Adorno’s claim that the current world is radically evil, and that we cannot know or even imagine what the good is, it is plausible that his conception of hope must be radical in this sense. I develop this argument through an analysis of (i) Adorno’s engagement with Kant’s conception of hope, (ii) Adorno’s references to hope, and (iii) his critical diagnosis of a metaphysical need for hope. Having demonstrated that Adorno must reject both ordinary and Kantian hope, I examine why Adorno thinks that we still may have reasons for hope. I also show that Adorno’s conception of hope differs from Lear’s in one important respect.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Theodor W. Adorno, Hope, Kant, Possibility, Utopia, Negativism, Jonathan Lear, Holocaust
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities > Philosophy and Art History, School of
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 30 Jul 2018 16:15
Last Modified: 14 Mar 2019 12:15
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/22738

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