The Stars Down to Earth
Routledge – 2001 – 256 pages
Series: Routledge Classics
The Stars Down to Earth shows us a stunningly prescient Adorno. Haunted by the ugly side of American culture industries he used the different angles provided by each of these three essays to showcase the dangers inherent in modern obsessions with consumption. He engages with some of his most enduring themes in this seminal collection, focusing on the irrational in mass culture - from astrology to new age cults, from anti-semitism to the power of neo-fascist propaganda. He points out that the modern state and market forces serve the interest of capital in its basic form. Stephan Crook's introduction grounds Adorno's arguments firmly in the present where extreme religious and political organizations are commonplace - so commonplace in fact that often we deem them unworthy of our attention. Half a century ago Theodore Adorno not only recognised the dangers, but proclaimed them loudly. We did not listen then. Maybe it is not too late to listen now.
'There is no question of the contemporary importance and relevance of these essays. T. W. Adorno is one of the great critics of the role of irrational authoritarianism in contemporary society.' Douglas Kellner
'This collection demonstrates the continuing relevance of Adorno's work to the analysis and understanding of modern times. A brilliant contribution to the sociology of racism, anti-Semitism and popular culture.' - Bryan S. Turner, co-editor, The Penguin Dictionary of Sociology
'Theodor Adorno returns from the grave to deliver this timely warning about the dangers of superstition.' Review
Introduction: Adorno and Authoritarian Irrationalisation
1.The Stars Down to Earth: The Los Angeles Times Astrology Column 2.Theses Against Occultism 3.Research Project on Anti-Semitism: Idea of the Project 4. Anti-Semitism and Fascist Propaganda
Theodor Adorno (1903 - 1969). German philosopher who was a leading member of the Frankfurt School. Adorno led an influential attack on the "culture industry" prevalent in contemporary capitalist society.