Thus God, the Absolute, eludes finite beings. Where they desire to name him,
because they must, they betray him. But if they keep silent about him, they
acquiesce in their own impotence and sin against the other, no less binding,
commandment to name him.1
The critique of metaphysics is by now a venerable tradition in Western thought and
has been tied since the end of the eighteenth century to the principle of
emancipation. The drive to disenchant the world — the ongoing tendency to wrest
rational control from what previously could only be seen as blind fate — has always
been closely associated with the Enlightenment’s concerted attack on the
institutional privileges and intellectual status accorded to revealed religion. The
story is well known. Kant saved faith from Hume and philosophy from dogmatism
by curtailing the speculative pretensions of the one and the reach of the other. At
the same time, he submitted religion to the court of reason and thus left space for
autonomy. The Left Hegelians (particularly Feuerbach and Marx) took the
humanization of the world a step further by reducing metaphysics to anthropology
and religion to need. The history of religion became the history of man’s alienated
but authentic hope, a hope that needed to be reclaimed in the name of freedom.
Nietzsche — the apostate son of a Lutheran pastor — launched his own, anti-Hegelian
critique of metaphysics. He sought to psychologize the urge for atemporal, necessary,
and universal Truth and thus to cure the nostalgia for a sovereign God and a
sovereign Subject by revealing them both to be fictions of grammar and bad faith.
And to this day, we find the emancipatory interest in overcoming metaphysics
pursued literally by Left Hegelians and rhetorically by Nietzscheans — by Marxists
and Heideggerians, by Leftists and Deconstructionists.
If there is any accuracy in this short and somewhat simplistic potted history of
anti-metaphysical thought, then it is worth asking how and why it is that Theodor
Adorno — aberrant Marxist, Left Hegelian par excellence, close reader and follower of
Nietzsche — should insist on using blatantly religious tropes throughout his career.
Now, it goes without saying that metaphysics — the study of extra-sensory reality — is
not always the same as religion. But, from his first book on Kierkegaard to his final
completed work, the Negative Dialectics, in which he launches a critical recovery of
metaphysics itself, Adorno returns again and again to themes derived from
metaphysics and theology. Assuming that Robert Hullot-Kentor is correct when he
claims that "theology is always moving right under the surface of all Adorno’s
writings" and that "theology penetrates every word" of them,2 I would like to look
at the use to which Adorno puts a particularly Jewish notion of the name of God. I
will argue that Adorno uses the Name as a model for a philosophy that understands
the historical conditions that constrain it and the human needs that render it
Let us begin at the end, with a quotation from the last section of Negative
Dialectics. Adorno is discussing that peculiar dialectic of enlightenment that turns
on itself with the result that "whoever believes in God cannot believe in God" and
that "[t]he possibility represented by the divine Name is maintained by whoever
does not believe." Adorno explains:
Once the prohibition on graven images extended to speaking the Name; now in this
form it has itself come to look suspiciously like superstition. . .This is how deeply
absorbed the history of metaphysical truth has become, that vainly denies history,
that is, progressive demythologization. This however feeds on itself just as the
mythical gods liked to devour their children. As it leaves nothing but the merely
existent behind, it flashes back into myth. For myth is nothing other than the closed
relation of immanence, of what is.3
For Adorno, following Weber, the second commandment was the first move towards
religious rationalization, a bold attempt to free man from myth:
In the Jewish religion, in which the idea of the patriarchate rises to the annihilation
of myth, the bond between Name and being is still recognized in the ban on
pronouncing the name of God. The disenchanted world of Judaism reconciles magic
through its negation in the idea of God. The Jewish religion will not endure a single
word that would grant comfort to the despair of all that is mortal. Hope is only tied
to the prohibition against calling on what is false as God, what is finite as the
Infinite, lie as Truth.4
If myth is the belief in the unavoidability of immanence, in the sheer ineluctable
necessity of the world as it is, then Judaism frees itself from myth by making the
divine Name transcendent — not as part of a magic incantation that calls godly
powers down to earth but as an indication that the world could in fact be different.
It is not that God does not have a name, that therefore the transcendent is not
possible. That would be myth, the fall into immanence that monotheistic Judaism
sought to escape. The prohibition on speaking the Name maintains the integrity of
the transcendent while preventing any shortcuts towards attaining it.
But the quotation from Negative Dialectics indicates that the course of
disenchantment has not come to a rest with the Judaic victory over myth in the
doctrine of the divine Name. The negation of mere magic has in turn been
demystified, has been revealed in history to be a false positivity, a myth. The
prohibition on magic, on the attempt to harness divine power, leaves one smack in
the middle of an unchangeable world. The protection of God’s transcendence has
come to look suspiciously like a lapse into immanence, so that now only the
non-believer can take the positions once held by belief; only the nonbeliever can
cleave to the hope of transcendence that inheres in the doctrine of the Name. At this
point in history — Adorno’s present moment — faith has fled from theology, which in
turn can be maintained solely by the faithless.
The apparent paradoxes that the dialectic of disenchantment brings forth are
figured linguistically by piling up negations, by avoiding the false stability of
positivities. But the hope that still lingers in the Name is not merely the residue of a
double negation, of the refusal of false hope that Horkheimer and Adorno posit in
their Dialectic of Enlightenment. It has positive content as well. This becomes clear
in a short essay on music and language, written ten years after the collaboration
with Horkheimer and a good decade before the Negative Dialectics. In it, Adorno
differentiates music from what he calls intentional language that is, the
instrumental language of everyday communication:
The language of music is quite different from the language of intentionality. It
contains a theological dimension. What it has to say is simultaneously revealed and
concealed. Its Idea is the divine Name which has been given shape. It is
demythologized prayer, rid of efficacious magic. It is the human attempt, doomed as
ever, to name the Name, not to communicate meanings... Music points to true
language in the sense that content is apparent in it, but it does so at the cost of
unambiguous meaning, which has migrated to the languages of intentionality.5
True language is thus not the language of meaning, of information, of
communication between people. It is the revelation of the absolute:
Intentional language wants to mediate the absolute, and the absolute escapes
language for every specific intention, leaves each one behind because each is limited.
Music finds the absolute immediately, but at the moment of discovery it becomes
obscured, just as too powerful a light dazzles the eyes, preventing them from seeing
things which are perfectly visible.6
The most important problem with intentional language is that it wants to mediate
the absolute. It wants to subsume the particular under the universal and render it
conceptual, knowable, and thus, not absolute. The absolute is, by definition,
impervious to mediation — it stands alone and independent. Intentional language
wants to establish a relation with the absolute, put the absolute in a relation with
others. Thus it can only offer partial, limited though conceptually clear, versions of
the absolute. True language — like the language of music — sacrifices the conceptually
clear for the immediacy of that which avoids mediation. Note that Adorno moves
from sound to sight. Language and music are like a blinding light that unveils a
presence in its inexhaustible totality in a flash. Unlike music and language, it is not
articulated over time. It is sudden and beyond dispute.
This dream of a language beyond intention derives directly from Walter Benjamin.
Here is Benjamin in the famously difficult introduction to his book on German
tragic drama (Trauerspiel):
Truth is the death of intention. . . The structure of truth, then demands a mode of
being which in its lack of intentionality resembles the simple existence of things, but
which is superior in its permanence.7
Benjamin contrasts Truth with the Idealist account of knowledge (Erkenntnis).
Whereas Knowledge seeks possession of an object through representation, Truth is
the self-representation of the object, its self-revelation.8 Truth, as the simple
existence of things, is Edenic and tied to the Adamic practice of naming:
...paradise [is] a state in which there is as yet no need to struggle with the
communicative significance of words. Ideas are displayed without intention in the
act of naming...all essences exist in complete and immaculate independence, not only
from phenomena, but, especially, from each other.9
Paradise is a paradise of simple existence, where names offer the world up for show.
They do not mediate the essences of things, they display them. They leave
everything free and absolute.
Now, Benjamin, returns to Genesis. He talks about the names that Adam gives, not
the name of God. We have discussed the value Adorno places on the ban on
speaking God’s name. I would like to suggest that he sees an advantage in
recuperating the notion of the Name itself. In order to see what he is getting at, I
would suggest that we look briefly at the elective affinities between Adorno and
Franz Rosenzweig, the German-Jewish philosopher, whose Star of Redemption
Benjamin praised, read, and quoted, although it is not quite clear how well he
understood the book he was able to plunder so well.
Rosenzweig provides the following brief discussion of proper names:
That which has a name of its own can no longer be a thing, no longer everyman’s
affair. It is incapable of utter absorption into the category for there can be no
category for it to belong to; it is its own category.10
A proper name signals an absolute particularity that cannot be subsumed in a
category or by a universal. It is not one of many, it is one of a kind and must be
addressed intersubjectively, that is, it must be treated as having dignity. My use of
Kantian language here is deliberate. That which has a proper name refuses
objectification, refuses reduction to instrumental calculations, is a cipher of the
Kingdom of Ends.
The ultimate proper name is the name of God:
The paradox of God’s being simultaneously near and remote is essentially expressed
in the fact that he has a name. Whatever has a name can be talked about, can be
talked to, according to whether it is absent or present. God is never absent. Hence
there is no theoretical concept of God. . .God alone has a name that is also a
concept; his concept is also his name.11
This little commentary, written a few years after The Star of Redemption, marks a
noticeable shift in Rosenzweig’s thinking. A proper name does not necessarily entail
that a thing should be granted dignity and thus has to be viewed as unique and free.
After all, the false gods of Palestine, such as Baal, have names. So their names do
not confer privilege, especially as one can speak them. To be fair, Rosenzweig, who
is interested in intersubjective communication, does not mention the prohibition
against speaking the Name. For him, it is central that God has a name, that God
can be addressed. Because there is no place that God is not, one cannot help
addressing him: he cannot be thematized, categorized, or subsumed under the
universal, because he is the universal. God’s name is both a particular and a
category: it is his own, infinite concept, if one can imagine such a thing. If, for
Benjamin, the revelation of simple existence through names occurred mythically in
Eden, it is for Rosenzweig a mundane, daily occurrence, and takes place in the
constant renewal of the relationship between God and man. In short, God always
has his Name.
There is an obvious disparity between Adorno and Rosenzweig here. Rosenzweig
begins with the assumption that God is absolute. He wants to show, through a
constant dialectic of nearness and remoteness, that transcendence does not preclude
an intersubjective relation to God. Adorno, on the other hand, wants to apply
theological insights to a world and language that seem too immanent, too mythical.
He redeploys the theological to make an ontological point, because a true ontology is
impossible in our day.
This impossibility is historical, although it is worth remembering that in the
Dialectic of Enlightenment, Horkheimer and Adorno do claim that it is endemic to
reason itself and thus is primordial. I would like to bracket this argument by
claiming that it was formulated with the distinct polemical purpose of that book in
mind — to outflank scientific positivism on one side and proto-Fascist irrationalism
on the other; to save modern rationality from itself and from its enemies.
The impossibility of a true contemporary ontology can be seen in the failure of the
false ones, particularly Heidegger’s. In the Negative Dialectics, Adorno argues that
there is indeed a moment of truth in Heidegger’s "fundamental ontology,"
although this truth lies in the fact that it is a response to a genuine need, not in the
content of that response itself. Adorno assumes that autonomy and its
concomitant — the recognition of difference — have become a basic human need. A
version of this need can be expressed philosophically as "the longing that Kant’s
verdict on a knowledge of the Absolute should not be the end of the matter."12 An
absolute is, by definition, autonomous. Autonomy as a need is determined by social
history, by the administrative rationalization of life under capitalism. Adorno follows
Marx and Lukacs in seeing that the essence of capitalism lies in the abstractness of
the exchange relationship, where all use value is overshadowed by exchange value,
all particularities are rendered equal by the universal medium of money, and all
qualities are reduced to mere quantity. This abstractness is born of the lie that
exchange value follows natural or quasi-natural laws, not man-made directives.13 In
a world geared to profit and mediated by money, efficiency is the order of the day
and smooth, well-tooled organization becomes the distorted image of the public good.
Heideggerian ontology rebels, however impotently, against these modern conditions
of heteronomy. Adorno writes:
Society has grown into the total functional context that liberalism thought it was:
what is is relative to what is other and is irrelevant to itself. The fear of this, the
dawning awareness that the subject is forfeiting its substantiality, prepares the
subject to harken to the solemn declaration that Being, which is implicitly equated
with that substantiality, survives, incapable of being lost, the total functional
Heidegger’s ontology, which to Adorno seems like nothing more than a rumbling
mythology of Being, is thus an index of a real historical predicament, a reaction to a
concrete socio-historical complex. But it is a wrong reaction, because while it
maintains the truth of philosophical Idealism by rejecting the irrevocable divisions
between inside and out, fact and concept, essence and appearance, history and
eternity, it projects their reconciliation not into the future but into an unrecoverable
past. It therefore leaves the subject in the trammels of an immanence that cannot be
transcended and leaves the subject worshipping a totality — Being — that is just
another figure in the phantasmagoria that masks the heteronomy of modern
A true ontology, one that met its human need, would be able to return substance to
the subject and the object. It could illuminate the particular without invoking the
exchange principle of conceptual thought by submitting that particular to the
de-differentiation of the universal. The particular exceeds the universal in that it is
unique, has an element that cannot be subsumed so readily. But the concept also
exceeds the individual:
The individual is both more and less than its general definition. But because it is
only through the transumption (Aufhebung) of this contradiction, and so through
the achieved identity between the particular and its concept, that the particular, the
definite would come to itself, the interest of the individual is not only in keeping
what the general concept steals from him, but also with the excess in the concept
when it is compared to his need.16
The universal has a surplus that the individual needs. This surplus is a promise that
is not yet fulfilled, even at the same time that the particular cannot be contained
within the constraints of the concept. In short, concept and individual are a bad fit,
but there is a utopian promise in this failure. In Adorno’s version of reconciliation,
as in Rosenzweig’s understanding of the Name, there is a vanishing point where
the universal would be adequate to the particular and the particular would be
adequate to the universal.
Adorno is quite explicit in tying the language of philosophy as it moves
asymptotically towards the ideal of a true ontology to the doctrine of the Name:
The determinable flaw of all concepts makes it necessary to cite others next to it:
from this flow those constellations to which solely something of the hope of the
Name has passed. The language of philosophy approaches that Name by denying it.
What the language of philosophy criticizes, its pretense to immediate truth, is
almost always the ideology of a positive, existing identity between word and thing.17
The individual concept is never adequate. Only constellations of concepts can begin
to account for the particular. Philosophy moves towards the Name — that future
reconciliation between universal and particular — by denying that the reconciliation
has yet taken place, by giving the lie to the ideological claim that word and thing,
universal and particular, coincide. Thus, philosophy parallels Judaism in refusing to
speak the Name.
If we see the prohibition as a question of mere refusal, we could argue that the
analogy between philosophy and Judaism, though riven with pathos, is inaccurate.
Jews do not speak the Name because they do not want to profane it; philosophy
does not speak the name because it is not yet adequate, because it is not yet the
Name. This objection makes sense if one sees the prohibition on pronouncing the
Name as applying only to the Tetragrammaton. But this is not the only name God
has, a point that Scholem (who Adorno claimed was his chief source of Judaic
knowledge)18 made clear on a number of occasions. Scholem made much of the
Kabbalistic notion that the Torah itself not only consisted of names of God, but was
itself the ineffable and unpronounceable name of God, that opened up interpretation
but could never be comprehended by it.19 Thus not only is one not supposed to
pronounce the Name, one cannot. One can only approximate it. David Biale has
shown that this notion of the Name and of revelation goes back to Hermann Cohen
whose neo-Kantian epistemology seems to have an echo in Adorno’s account of
asymptotic knowledge as well.20
I have therefore argued that Adorno mobilizes a particularly theological and
particularly German-Jewish doctrine of the divine Name to describe the task of a
philosophy, based on human need, that urges towards and cannot achieve a true
ontology. The impossibility of achieving that ontology is historically derived and
does not come from a positive prohibition. But, for Adorno, truly self-reflective
thought will have to make the prohibition conscious, will have to thematize it, if it is
not to fall for the ideological blandishments of a false ontology based on immediacy.
It will not be able to retreat from ontology completely and rest with epistemology, if
epistemology means resorting to a strict dichotomy between subject and object that
either deifies or eliminates mediation.
In the present dispensation where quantitative, universalizing reason rules, the
small moves towards true ontology that philosophy can make will look like
aesthetics and will be allied to metaphysics, that is, the knowledge of the absolute.
The micrological appreciation of the nuance, of the place where the particular differs
from the universal, where its absoluteness appears, if only as a cipher, requires what
Kant called the faculty of reflective judgment.21 This faculty reasons from the
individual to the universal. In the process, it plays a game of "as if," because it sees
the particular as if it were contained under a determinate universal while knowing
that this is a necessary fiction if the particular is to be intelligible at all. For the
individual (work of art) cannot be subsumed under a law because it gives itself its
own law. Because it has a form, it looks like it should be intelligible. But that form,
a cipher of freedom, seems to escape intelligibility in the end. And so, Adorno
(whose definition of metaphysics here owes everything to reflective judgment):
Metaphysics is, according to its own concept, not possible as a deductive context of
judgments about beings. Nor can it be thought of on the model of an absolute
Otherness, which in fear despises thought... The smallest intramundane traits would
be relevant to the Absolute, for the micrological view shatters the shells of what,
measured by the subsuming cover concept, seems to be helplessly isolated, and
explodes its identity, the delusion that it is only a specimen (emphasis added).22
To think the absolute, to approach the absolute, cannot entail deduction, for to
reason from the particular is by definition inductive. Nor can thought of the
absolute flee from reason to some immediate apperception. Rather, it must learn to
discriminate the "smallest intramundane traits," those tiny marks of irrevocable
difference that show that it cannot be subsumed completely by the cover concept,
that it is not completely subject to an alien law.
For Adorno, modern thought, if it is to have critical, emancipatory intent, will have
to ally itself to metaphysics and draw the tropes of theology into its orbit, not as
mere ornament, but not yet fulfilled promises of reason. Adorno’s nicely Hegelian
dictum that "[w]hat has been cast aside but not absorbed theoretically will often
yield its truth content only later,"23 gets its demonstration in his recuperation of
the Name. I have indicated that according to this logic, critical philosophy must
now draw on aesthetics because this is the closest it can come to the unredeemed
truth of ontological need. In an essay on Brecht and Sartre, Adorno remarked that
"[t]his is not the time for political works of art; rather, politics has migrated into
the autonomous work of art."24 In an administered world given over to profit and
exchange, art and aesthetic perception will be the only places that the solid ground
of resistance that used to be mapped by ontology and politics can be approached. To
put it more simply: if politics has fled to art, it is because ontology has fled — beaten,
beleaguered, and distorted — to aesthetics.
Adorno’s crack that in psychoanalysis nothing is true except the exaggerations (as
well as betraying a keen understanding of the way meaning is derived in the
analytic process) is a deadly accurate self-description.25 Adorno is often his most
insightful when he is most extreme. And so it is that for the brief space that
remains in this essay, I want to return to Adorno’s bizarre insistence on a theology
without belief, on metaphysics at the time of its disappearance. While his historical
paradoxes — that only when theology has been banished from critical philosophy can
its undigested truths shine out — interest me and Adorno’s sometimes complicated
theory of the truth needs further elaboration, it is his return to theology and
metaphysics when these have been so well established as the conservative enemies of
liberation that I want to end with.
Adorno’s attempt to redeem the undigested and therefore emancipatory semantic
potential of Jewish theology and speculative metaphysics serves as an interesting
warning against a superstitious fear of an unmastered intellectual past and a
fetishizing confidence in the supersession of old ideas. "Metaphysics" tout court is
no more the enemy of liberation than a blind faith in historical progress is its
guarantee. To banish "metaphysics" in the name of progress might be to regress to a
mythological worship of what has merely come to exist. To put it in Adorno’s own
words: "Progress is not a conclusive category. It wants to disrupt the triumph of
radical evil, not to triumph in itself."26
The secret could well be that metaphysics lurking in its old haunts might pose a
danger to autonomy but that any all-encompassing prohibition on metaphysics is
always on the verge of becoming myth. The name of God is a potent idea, not if it is
just secularized to a pretty little metaphor, but if it is redeployed to a place, where,
according to its critique, it legitimately belongs. Adorno shows that the name of God
is a model for and an index of an ontology, of a metaphysical experience of the
absolute, in an era of equivalence and ineluctable mediation. There is, of course,
much to be debated in the exaggerations of Adorno’s thought: his now-outdated
reliance on theories of monopoly capital; his often monochromatic account of the
course of rationalization; and his language theory. Nevertheless, I remain impressed
with his guts, with his adamant refusal to give up one iota of experience to the
rigorism of a post-Kantian philosophy. While I understand Habermas’s scruples
about the limits of philosophy, I cannot help remembering that Habermas addresses
the practice of philosophy as a discipline, not the practice of thought itself. This
being the case, Adorno indicates that our thinking might well want to avail itself of
the truths of theology and metaphysics as long as we can see just how false they are,
that is, just how they are false.27
(1) Theodor W. Adorno, "Sacred Fragment: Schoenberg’s Moses und Aron," Quasi
Una Fantasia, trans. Rodney Livingstone (London: Verso, 1992), p. 226.
(2) Theodor W. Adorno, Kierkegaard: Construction of the Aesthetic, trans. Robert
Hullot-Kentor (Minneapolis: Univ. of Minnesota Press, 1989), p. xi.
(3) Theodor W. Adorno, Negative Dialectics, trans. E.B. Ashton (NY: Continuum,
1973) 401-2. This is a notoriously bad translation of a notoriously difficult book, and
throughout this paper I have altered Ashton’s version to conform more closely with
the German original.
(4) Max Horkheimer and Theodor Adorno, Dialectic of Enlightenment, trans. John
Cumming (NY: Continuum, 1986), p. 23. Again, I have modified this translation.
(5) Quasi Una Fantasia, pp. 2-3.
(6) Quasi Una Fantasia, p. 4.
(7) Walter Benjamin, The Origin of German Tragic Drama, trans. John Osborne
(London: New Left Books, 1977), p. 36; see also his famous letter to Martin Buber
in Gershom Scholem and Theodor W. Adorno eds., The Letters of Walter Benjamin,
trans. Manfred R. Jacobson and Evelyn M. Jacobson (Chicago: Univ. of Chicago
Press, 1994), pp. 79-81.
(8) Benjamin, pp. 29-30.
(9) Benjamin, p. 37.
(10) Franz Rosenzweig, The Star of Redemption, trans. William W. Hallo (London:
Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1970), pp. 188-9.
(11) Nahum Glatzer, ed., Franz Rosenzweig (NY: Schocken, 1960), p. 281.
(12) Negative Dialectics, p. 61.
(13) Here is Marx:
"The various proportions in which different kinds of labor are reduced to simple
labor as their unit of measurement are established by a social process that goes on
behind the backs of the producers; these proportions therefore appear to the
producers to have been handed down by tradition." (Karl Marx, Capital, trans. Ben
Fowkes (London: New Left Books, 1976), 3 vols., I:135).
It is important to supplement this quotation with another from Adorno:
"When we criticize the exchange principle as the identifying principle of thought, we
want to realize the ideal of free and just exchange. To date, this ideal is only a
pretext. Its realization alone would transcend exchange. Once critical theory has
shown it up for what it is, an exchange of things that are equal and yet unequal, our
critique of the inequality within equality aims at equality too..." (Negative Dialectics,
(14) Negative Dialectics, p. 65.
(15) Negative Dialectics, pp. 91-3.
(16) Negative Dialectics, p. 151.
(17) Negative Dialectics, p. 53.
(18) Theodor W. Adorno, "Gruss an Gershom G. Scholem," Gesammelte Schriften, ed.,
Rolf Tiedemann, (Frankfurt: Suhrkamp, 1986), 20 vols., XX:I 482-3.
(19) See (in order of their original composition), "Revelation and Tradition as
Religious Categories," The Messianic Idea in Judaism (NY: Schocken, 1971), pp.
292-4; "The Meaning of the Torah in Jewish Mysticism," On the Kabbalah and Its
Symbolism (NY: Schocken, 1965), pp. 39-43; "The Name of God and the Linguistic
Theory of the Kabbalah," Diogenes 79-80 (1972-3), pp. 77-80, 173-4, 180-3, 194.
(20) David Biale, Gershom Scholem: Kabbalah and Counter-History (Cambridge:
Harvard Univ. Press, 1979), pp. 79-80, 96-7, 110-11.
(21) Cf. Negative Dialectics, pp. 44-5.
(22) Negative Dialectics, pp. 407-8.
(23) Negative Dialectics, p. 144.
(24) Theodor W. Adorno, "Commitment," Notes to Literature, trans. Shierry Weber
Nicholsen (NY: Columbia Univ. Press, 1991-2), 2 vols., II: pp. 92-3.
(25) Theodor W. Adorno, Minima Moralia, trans. E.F.N. Jephcott (London: New Left
Books, 1974), p. 49.
(26) Theodor W. Adorno, "Progress," Benjamin: Philosophy, Aesthetics, History, ed.
Gray Smith (Chicago: Chicago Univ. Press, 1989), p. 101.
(27) My thanks are due to Sharon Squassoni and Nancy Weiss Hanrahan, who read
closely and suggested well. A final note of pathos as well: my father died on October
6, 1994, a year before I wrote this. Being the quintessential German Jew that he
was, he was cremated, and his ashes scattered on the hillside behind his house. He
therefore has no headstone to honor his memory. This paper, such as it is, is for
him: Thomas David Kaufmann, 1922-1994, Proverbs I:6.
adorno and the name of god