Rowman & Littlefield Publishers / Rowman & Littlefield International
Trim: 5¾ x 8¼
978-1-78552-323-6 • Hardback • December 2018 • $133.00 • (£102.00)
978-1-5381-5827-2 • Paperback • November 2021 • $40.00 • (£31.00)
978-1-78552-324-3 • eBook • December 2018 • $38.00 • (£29.00)
Stephane Symons is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at KU Leuven, Belgium. He is the author of Walter Benjamin: Presence of Mind, Failure to Comprehend (2013) and More than Life: Georg Simmel and Walter Benjamin on Art (2017), editor of The Marriage of Aesthetics and Ethics (2015) and co-editor of Walter Benjamin and Theology (2015).
Introduction: The Work of Forgetting. Or, How Can We Make the Future Possible?
Chapter One: What is Thought? And How Can We Bring It About?
Chapter Two: What is the Immemorial? And How Can We Make It Go Away?
Chapter Three: What is the Child? Or How Can We Begin Anew?
By Way of Conclusion: A Note on Shadows
An original, well-informed, and profoundly provocative meditation on the untoward theme of forgetting. Focusing on the writings of Walter Benjamin in the context of authors such as Baudelaire, Nietzsche, Bergson, Proust, and Arendt, Stéphane Symons shows how transience can be worked through from within and transmuted into a creative force.— Howard Eiland, Lecturer, Literature Faculty, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Does not obsessive remembrance—our age of commemorations—risk occluding any capacity to imagine and convey an alternative future? After several decades of ritualized praise for the ethical duties and political wisdom of memory, this highly exigent, provocative and impressively erudite book convincingly rediscovers the potentialities of the work of forgetting. Rereading through this refreshing prism a huge constellation of writers and thinkers, Stéphane Symons unveils a fascinating intellectual landscape and emphasizes the transient character of history as a creative force.
— Enzo Traverso, Susan and Barton Winokur Professor in the Humanities, Cornell University