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Agnes Heller was born in Budapest, Hungary, in 1929 and is a member of the Budapest School, a loosely connected group of intellectuals whose identity revolves around the association with their former teacher Georg Lukàcs and the experience of “really existing socialism” under the domain of the former Soviet Union. The experience of really existing socialism, analysed by Ferenc Fehér, Agnes Heller, and Görgy Márkus (1983) in Dictatorship over Needs, contributed to an understanding and critique of the totalitarian version of modernity, which has been subsequently accompanied by the experience and critique of the liberal-democratic one. This double experience culminated in Heller's A Theory of Modernity (1999).

Heller's critical theory of modernity is also accompanied by a philosophical anthropology grounded in needs and feelings, of ...

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