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Between Past and Future (1954)

by Hannah Arendt

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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757720,669 (4.21)4
Hannnah Arendt (1906-1975) was for many years University Professor of Political Philosophy in the Graduate Faculty of the New School for Social Research and a Visiting Fellow of the Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago. She is also the author of Eichmann in Jerusalem, On Revolution, and Between Past and Future (all available from Penguin Twentieth-Century Classics).… (more)



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» See also 4 mentions

English (5)  French (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (7)
Showing 5 of 5
Arendt describes the loss of meaning of the traditional key words of politics: justice, reason, responsibility, virtue, glory. Through a series of eight exercises, she shows how we can redistill once more the vital essence of these concepts.
  GalenWiley | Apr 15, 2015 |
Arendt never ceases to impress me with the depth and clarity of her thought. Recommended to all. ( )
  HadriantheBlind | Mar 30, 2013 |
This is an aptly named collection of essays on history, politics and culture. The author seems to have been a full-blooded representative of early 20th century German philosophy, fluent in ancient Greek and incredibly versed in the classics. In the first three or four essays I was a bit annoyed by her constant referrals to Plato (with Hegel as sidekick), but that's mostly a question of personal preference. The later essays on education and mass culture were less dependent on Plato. But the essay on Truth and Politics was by far the most interesting one to me. The author's real-life experience with totalitarian politics clearly contributes to her analysis an understanding which is absent from modern political theory. All in all this is a deep book which offers a lot to think about.
1 vote thcson | Dec 19, 2012 |
Arendt considers modernity in political thought. To be precise, she examines eight critical issues confronting the late twentieth century. ( )
  Fledgist | Jul 14, 2012 |
Another excellent contribution by Hannah Arendt. comprised of eight essays dealing with the modern concept of history, political authority and its decline in the modern world, freedom, education, culture, politics and space exploration.

To touch on just two of the above, the essay on freedom discusses how the ancient and explicitly political concept of freedom, which held that freedom existed only among men [sic], was gradually replaced by concepts drawn from philosophical and religious experience that affirmed freedom as a sort of sanctuary away from the interference and influence of others. Freedom thus became a feature of thought and perhaps individual behaviour, rather than of political action.

The essay on authority is apropos in Canada right now, as we re-evaluate the role of the Senate. Arendt argues that all modern concepts of authority are derivations of the ancient Greek efforts to work out what authority meant, and they in turn drew theres from two essentially anti-political relationships: that of the master to his slave, and that of the head of house to his family.
By contrast, only the Romans, Arendt argues, had a genuinely political concept of authority, which for them (as for some later, e.g. Machiavelli) was explicitly tied to the act of founding (the political act par excellence) and augmenting that foundation. ( )
1 vote lukeasrodgers | Apr 14, 2008 |
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» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Hannah Arendtprimary authorall editionscalculated
Kohn, JeromeIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Persson, Annika RuthTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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