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Kluge, Alexander

Difference and Orientation

An Alexander Kluge Reader

Ed. by Langston, Richard

Series:signale|TRANSFER: German Thought in Translation


    165,95 € / $189.95 / £150.00*

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    Publication Date:
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    September 2019
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    Aims and Scope

    Alexander Kluge is one of contemporary Germany's leading intellectuals and artists. A key architect of the New German Cinema and a pioneer of auteur television programming, he has also cowritten three acclaimed volumes of critical theory, published countless essays and numerous works of fiction, and continues to make films even as he expands his video production to the internet. Despite Kluge's five decades of work in philosophy, literature, television, and media politics, his reputation outside of the German-speaking world still largely rests on his films of the 1960s, 70s, and 80s.

    With the aim of introducing Kluge's heterogeneous mind to an Anglophone readership, Difference and Orientation assembles thirty of his essays, speeches, glossaries, and interviews, revolving around the capacity for differentiation and the need for orientation toward ways out of catastrophic modernity. This landmark volume brings together some of Kluge's most fundamental statements on literature, film, pre- and post-cinematic media, and social theory, nearly all for the first time in English translation. Together, these works highlight Kluge's career-spanning commitment to unorthodox, essayistic thinking.


    486 pages
    22 b&w halftones
    Alexander Kluge, Aesthetics, Media Theory, Film Theory, Critical Theory

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    Richard Langston is Associate Professor of German Literature at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is the author of Visions of Violence and translator of History and Obstinacy.LangstonRichard:

    Richard Langston is an Associate Professor of German Literature at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the author of Visions of Violence, a co-editor of the Alexander Kluge-Jahrbuch, the lead translator of Kluge and Negt's History and Obstinacy, and the author of a forthcoming monograph on Negt and Kluge entitled Dark Matter, in Defiance of Catastrophic Modernity.


    Michael Jennings, Princeton University, coauthor of Walter Benjamin:

    "Interest in Alexander Kluge's astonishingly varied production has exploded in the English-Language world. This volume makes available for the first time a judicious selection of his most important essays and shows Kluge the essayist is no less remarkable than Kluge the filmmaker, Kluge the author of fictions, Kluge the theorist, or Kluge the media visionary."

    Christopher Pavsek, Simon Fraser University, author of The Utopia of Film:

    "Richard Langston has assembled a remarkable collection of essays and interviews by Alexander Kluge that introduces English-speaking readers to a different Kluge than they are familiar with. The excellent translations capture the incisiveness, range, and wit of one of the most intelligent, prolific, and creative minds in contemporary Europeean history."

    Rainer Stollmann, University of Bremen:

    "Alexander Kluge's colossal oeuvre sets out to shepherd both Theodor W. Adorno's and Walter Benjamin's Frankfurt School into the twenty-first century. Richard Langston's anthology provides English-language readers with an essential compendium containing five decades of Kluge's reflections on Critical Theory's poetical potential."

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