Adorno musicologist and composer

Theodor Adorno (1903 – 1969) was a German philosopher, sociologist, musicologist and academic.


He was an exponent of the Frankfurt School and distinguished himself by a radical critique of society and advanced capitalism. In addition to sociological texts, his work contains writings related to morality and aesthetics, as well as critical studies on the philosophy of Hegel, Husserl and Heidegger. The whole philosophical and sociological reflection was accompanied by an imposing musicological activity throughout its existence.


A student at the University of Frankfurt, his personal friendship with Max Horkheimer put him in contact with the Institute for Social Research in Frankfurt am Main. The advent of Nazism forced him into exile, first at Oxford and then in America, in what he called the United Statisti. Here he was particularly involved in cutting-edge sociological projects such as the Radio Research Project and above all in the investigation of authoritarian personality.


Returning to Germany in the early fifties, his lectures at the University of Frankfurt registered a growing participation, and the fame of the seminar he had with Max Horkheimer on Hegelian themes increased in Europe.

A skilled pianist, Adorno was also a composer and student of Alban Berg in Vienna. In addition to the famous Philosophy of Modern Music, in which he contrasts Schönberg with Stravinsky, dialectically, monographs on Wagner, Mahler and Alban Berg himself are present in his critical production.


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