Cover

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Title Page, Copyright

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Contents

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pp. v-vi

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Acknowledgments

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pp. vii-x

In Minima Moralia, Adorno writes, “To say ‘we’ and mean ‘I’ is one of the most recondite insults.” Elsewhere in the book he also claims, “In many people it is already an impertinence to say ‘I.’” It strikes me that an author is uncomfortably situated between these two statements. ...

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Introduction: Dreams in America

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pp. xi-xxxvi

The years since those lines were written have done little to alter those anecdotes or their inevitable outcome; the narrative of emigration, alienation, and return is ineluctable and irrefutable. The tale of Adorno’s disorientation in the United States, his dismay at his reception, and his disgust with the products of American culture is so often cited ...

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1. The Monster Under the Stone: Adorno and the Rise of Administrative Research

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pp. 1-46

In Adorno’s original typescript manuscript of Minima Moralia, there is an aphorism, titled “Procrustes,” one of several subsequently excised from the final published text of the book. In the aphorism, Adorno baldly and witheringly attacks “the sneering empiricist sabotage” that he fears is destined to take over the academy. ...

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2. Adorno in Sponsor-Land: Authority on the Radio

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pp. 47-104

Among Max Horkheimer’s papers, there is a draft of a curious letter composed in the summer of 1940. Written to Elizabeth Rend Mitchell, the wife of Charles E. Mitchell,1 and asking for a donation of $1,500 to help Adorno complete work on one of his projects, the correspondence contains the following, somewhat droll paragraph: ...

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3. Below the Surface: Frankfurt Goes to Hollywood

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pp. 105-148

In City of Nets, Otto Friedrich’s exceptional snapshot of Hollywood in the 1940s, the author makes room for a brief mention of the Institute of Social Research. Suggesting that the “whole group” from the “Frankfurt Institute” came to Los Angeles at the invitation of Ernst Simmel, one of the founders of the Berlin Psychoanalytic Institute ...

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4. “If There Should Be a Posterity”: High Modernism, Horoscopes, and Heroic Salesmen

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pp. 149-178

In the essay “The Absence of the Book,” Maurice Blanchot writes, “the book (the civilization of the book) declares: there is a memory that transmits things, there is a system that arranges things; time becomes entangled in the book, where the void still belongs to a structure.”1 ...

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Coda: Theodor Adorno, American

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pp. 179-192

In 1938, an alien from a Jewish background landed in America. His name having been changed, and with his origins thus somewhat obscured, he nevertheless had talents that set him apart from others and marked him as exceptional, different. ...

Notes

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pp. 193-222

Works Cited

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pp. 223-234

Index

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pp. 235-243