Dreamland Of Humanists: Warburg, Cassirer, Panofsky, And The Hamburg School

Paperback | February 19, 2015

byEmily J. Levine

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Deemed by Heinrich Heine a city of merchants where poets go to die, Hamburg was an improbable setting for a major intellectual movement. Yet it was there, at the end of World War I, at a new university in this commercial center, that a trio of twentieth-century pioneers in the humanities emerged. Working side by side, Aby Warburg, Ernst Cassirer, and Erwin Panofsky developed new avenues in art history, cultural history, and philosophy, changing the course of cultural and intellectual history in Weimar Germany and throughout the world.

In Dreamland of Humanists, Emily J. Levine considers not just these men, but the historical significance of the time and place where their ideas took form. Shedding light on the origins of their work on the Renaissance and the Enlightenment, Levine clarifies the social, political, and economic pressures faced by German-Jewish scholars on the periphery of Germany’s intellectual world. By examining the role that context plays in our analysis of ideas, Levine confirms that great ideas—like great intellectuals—must come from somewhere.
 

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Deemed by Heinrich Heine a city of merchants where poets go to die, Hamburg was an improbable setting for a major intellectual movement. Yet it was there, at the end of World War I, at a new university in this commercial center, that a trio of twentieth-century pioneers in the humanities emerged. Working side by side, Aby Warburg, Erns...

Emily J. Levine is assistant professor of history at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Born in New York City, she lives in Durham, North Carolina.
Format:PaperbackDimensions:464 pages, 9 × 6 × 1.18 inPublished:February 19, 2015Publisher:University Of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:022627246X

ISBN - 13:9780226272467

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Preface
Acknowledgments
 
INTRODUCTION Dreamland of Humanists

1 Culture, Commerce, and the City
2 Warburg’s Renaissance and the Things in Between
3 University as “Gateway to the World”
4 Warburg, Cassirer, and the Conditions of Reason
5 Socrates in Hamburg? Panofsky and the Economics of Scholarship
6 Iconology and the Hamburg School
7 Private Jews, Public Germans
8 Cassirer’s Cosmopolitan Nationalism
9 The Enlightened Rector and the Politics of Enlightenment
10 The Hamburg America Line: Exiles as Exports

EPILOGUE  Nachleben of an Idea
 
Notes
Selected Bibliography
Index

Editorial Reviews

“Dreamland of Humanists is more than a detailed chronicle of a unique research institute in exile. Levine’s main focus is the cultural life of Hamburg during the Weimar Republic and its effects on the three scholars who were involved in creating the Warburg Institute. If anything, her book is reminiscent of Allan Janik and Stephen Toulmin’s Wittgenstein’s Vienna  in capturing the spirit of a particular city and a remarkable group of intellectuals. . . . Clearly written, copiously detailed and a fine example of intellectual and cultural history.”