Christoph Menke

The Sovereignty of Art - Aesthetic Experiences after Adorno and Derrida

(German title: Die Souveränität der Kunst)
ca. 311 pages
Christoph Menke
Foto: Christoph Menke
© Jürgen Bauer

Christoph Menke is Professor of Practical Philosophy at the Geothe Universität Frankfurt am Main, as well as in the cluster of excellence »The Development of Normative Systems« (»Die Herausbildung normativer Ordnungen«).

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Spanish world rights (Visor Distribuciones - published, rights reverted), Japan (Ochanomizu)


Adorno’s and Derrida’s theories of aesthetics center around art’s claim to sovereignty: art transcends the differentiated construct of modern reason by being a moment simultaneously next to and among others. The newer hermeneutic aesthetics in particular have seen the betrayal of art’s autonomy and its equation with a superior insight into the constitution of reason in the proclamation of aesthetic sovereignty because of that.

In a chain of reasoning in which Derrida’s deconstruction and Adorno’s aesthetics of negativity criticise and enlighten one another, a concept of aesthetic experience that meets the hermeneutic objection is developed, in which the central idea is that art, through its negativity, poses a threat to our non-aesthetic discourses that cannot be overcome by reason.

Other publications

Kritik der Rechte/Critique of Rights (2015)

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English world rights (Polity)

Die Kraft der Kunst/The Power of Art (2013)

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Spanish world rights (Metales Pesados), Korea (W. Media), Turkey (Hece)

Kraft/Force (2005)

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English world rights (Fordham UP), Chinese simplex (East China Normal UP), Italy (Armando Armando), Korea (Greenbee)

Die Gegenwart der Tragödie/Tragic Play (2005)

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English world rights (Columbia UP), Spanish world rights (Machado – published, rights reverted)

Spiegelungen der Gleichheit/Reflections of Equality (2004)

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English world rights (Stanford UP)