(Stanford University Press)

The author examines the literary genre of the Denkbild, or “thought-image” — a poetic mode of writing that interweaves philosophical, political, and cultural insights — and its use by four major German-Jewish writers and philosophers of the first half of the 20th century (Theodor W. Adorno, Walter Benjamin, Ernst Bloch, and Siegfried Kracauer). Richter analyzes the linguistic characteristics of this mode of writing and establishes links between these writers and contemporary French thinkers. Richter is a professor of German and critical theory at the University of California, Davis.