Walter Benjamin

(2552 words)
  • Esther Leslie (Birkbeck, University of London)

Walter Benjamin is hard to pin down. His writings do not fit easily into one discipline or area, and his output ranges across art history and aesthetics, literary theory, anthropology, history, philosophy, linguistics and politics. His close friends and correspondents included the Marxist playwright Bertolt Brecht, the critical theorist Theodor Adorno and the Judaic scholar Gershom Scholem. The topics that attracted Benjamin are diverse: literature of the baroque, Romantic and modern periods, especially Goethe, Baudelaire, Kafka, Proust and Brecht, the philosophy of history, the social dynamics of technology, nineteenth century Paris, fascism and militarism, the city, capitalist time, childhood, memory, art and photography. Benjamin's …

Please log in to consult the article in its entirety. If you are a member (student of staff) of a subscribing institution (see List), you should be able to access the LE on campus directly (without the need to log in), and off-campus either via the institutional log in we offer, or via your institution's remote access facilities, or by creating a personal user account with your institutional email address. If you are not a member of a subscribing institution, you will need to purchase a personal subscription. For more information on how to subscribe as an individual user, please see under Individual Subcriptions.

Citation:
Leslie, Esther. "Walter Benjamin". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 07 July 2001
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=357, accessed 02 August 2015.]

Articles on Benjamin's works

  1. Passagen-Werk [Arcades Project]

Related Groups

  1. Critical Theory