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Nico Bobka & Dirk Braunstein

In: The SAGE Handbook of Frankfurt School Critical Theory

Chapter 11: Theodor W. Adorno and Negative Dialectics

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Theodor W. Adorno and Negative Dialectics
Theodor W. Adorno and Negative Dialectics
Nico Bobka Dirk Braunstein

Theodor Ludwig Wiesengrund was born in Frankfurt am Main on September 11, 1903. He was the only child of assimilated Jewish wine merchant Oscar Alexander Wiesengrund (1870–1946) and the Catholic singer Maria, born Calvelli-Adorno (1865–1952). When later, in exile, he obtained American citizenship, Theodor took his mother’s maiden name, ‘Adorno’, as his own last name. Adorno grew up well looked after in his educated middle-class home, and developed an almost limitless passion for music under the influence of his mother and her sister Agathe Calvelli-Adorno (1868–1935), who lived with the Wiesengrunds. In his early childhood, Adorno received piano lessons; later he would learn ...

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