Correspondence 1926-1969

Hannah Arendt, Author, Karl Jaspers, With Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) $49.95 (848p) ISBN 978-0-15-107887-5
The voluminous correspondence between political philosopher Arendt and German existentialist Jaspers, who taught her philosophy in Heidelberg, is a study in contrasts. Jaspers mistrusts his ``stale fame'' and postwar respectability after years of official neglect. Arendt, a refugee from Hitler's Germany, feels alone and stateless in New York, yet is determined to live ``on the fringes of society.'' Jaspers idealizes the United States as a model for a united Europe. Arendt is acutely critical of McCarthy-era abuses, the disintegration of America's cities and schools and the authoritarian drift of mass society. Jaspers, whose wife was Jewish, engages Arendt in opinionated, heartfelt dialogues on the Holocaust, German resistance to Hitler, the Eichmann trial, Marx, Spinoza, Israeli politics, JFK, the atomic bomb and the Vietnam war, among other topics. In a clash of titans, the two close friends spar and confide in each other in this rich, kinetic correspondence spanning the middle decades of the century. Kohler, a retired professor of German, is literary executor of Arendt's estate; Saner, a Swiss philosophy professor, is executor of Jaspers's. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 08/31/1992
Release date: 09/01/1992
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 848 pages - 978-0-15-622599-1
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