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Adorno’s Theory of Mimesis at the “End of Bourgeois Epoch”

Croatian Philosophical Society
Publication Date
  • Theodor Adorno
  • Mimezis
  • Roger Callois
  • Društvo
  • Napredak
  • Klasa
  • Znanost
  • Umjetnost
  • Theodor Adorno
  • Mimesis
  • Roger Callois
  • Society
  • Progress
  • Class
  • Science
  • Art
  • Design
  • Economics
  • Musicology
  • Philosophy
  • Political Science


Adorno developed his theory of mimesis as one of the main pillars of his critical theory of society and its (lack of) progress. In order to show the origins and importance of Adorno’s theory of mimesis, the authors proceeded in four steps. In the first part of the article they are establishing connections between Adorno’s and Callois’ theory of mimesis, as the starting point of Adorno’s dealing with this topic; in second part they pay attention to Adorno’s first application of theory of mimesis on the class relations in mass society of modern capitalism; third part brings insights in Adorno’s critique of mimetic tendencies of modern science; and in fourth part the ambiguities of mimetic art in Adorno’s sociology of music and aesthetic theory are revealed. Some of these mimetic manifestations Adorno interpreted as the signs of the “bourgeois epoch” approaching to its very end, while some of them he perceived as the bearers of hope in regeneration.

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