Philosophy & Critical Theory
Books in this online selection represent only a sliver of what we offer in the store. If you've got a particular book in mind and want to check on its availability, call us at 415-362-8193.

   
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The Grey Album
On the Blackness of Blackness
Kevin Young
Taking its title from Danger Mouse's pioneering mashup of Jay-Z's The Black Album and the Beatles' The White Album, Kevin Young’s encyclopedic book combines essay, cultural criticism, and lyrical chorus to illustrate the African American tradition of...
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Madness
The Invention of an Idea
Michel Foucault
Compelling and highly influential, Michel Foucault's Madness is an indispensable work for readers who wish to understand the intellectual evolution of one of the most important social theorists of the twentieth century. Written in 1954 and revised...
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A Lover's Discourse
Fragments
Roland Barthes
A Lover’s Discourse, at its 1978 publication, was revolutionary: Roland Barthes made unprecedented use of the tools of structuralism to explore the whimsical phenomenon of love. Rich with references ranging from Goethe’s Werther to Winnicott, from...
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Camera Lucida
Reflections on Photography
Roland Barthes
A graceful, contemplative volume, Camera Lucida was first published in 1979. Commenting on artists such as Avedon, Clifford, Mapplethorpe, and Nadar, Roland Barthes presents photography as being outside the codes of language or culture, acting on the...
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A Little History of the World
E. H. Gombrich
In 1935, with a doctorate in art history and no prospect of a job, the 26-year-old Ernst Gombrich was invited by a publishing acquaintance to attempt a history of the world for younger readers. Amazingly, he completed the task in an intense six weeks...
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Storming the Gates of Paradise
Landscapes for Politics
Rebecca Solnit
Rebecca Solnit has made a vocation of journeying into difficult territory and reporting back, as an environmentalist, antiglobalization activist, and public intellectual. Storming the Gates of Paradise, an anthology of her essential essays from the...
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The Work of Art in the Age of Its Technological Reproducibility, and Other Writings on Media
Walter Benjamin
Benjamin’s famous “Work of Art” essay sets out his boldest thoughts—on media and on culture in general—in their most realized form, while retaining an edge that gets under the skin of everyone who reads it. In this essay the visual arts of the...
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The Neutral
Lecture Course at the College de France (1977-1978)
Roland Barthes
"I define the Neutral as that which outplays the paradigm, or rather I call Neutral everything that baffles paradigm." With these words, Roland Barthes describes a concept that profoundly shaped his work and was the subject of a landmark series of...
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Existentialism Is a Humanism
Jean Paul Sartre
It was to correct common misconceptions about his thought that Sartre accepted an invitation to speak on October 29, 1945, at the Club Maintenant in Paris. The unstated objective of his lecture (“Existentialism Is a Humanism”) was to...
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The Absence of Myth
Writings on Surrealism
Georges Bataille
Georges Bataille was one of the most provocative and controversial writers of his time. These essays, the result of profound reflection in the wake of World War II, comprise his most incisive study of surrealism, insisting on its importance as a...
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City of Quartz
Excavating the Future in Los Angeles, New Edition
Mike Davis
A fully updated edition of Mike Davis's visionary work.No metropolis has been more loved or more hated. To its official boosters, "Los Angeles brings it all together." To detractors, LA is a sunlit mortuary where "you can rot without feeling it." To...
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On Hashish
Walter Benjamin, Howard Eiland
Walter Benjamin's posthumously published collection of writings on hashish is a detailed blueprint for a book that was never written--a "truly exceptional book about hashish," as Benjamin describes it in a letter to his friend Gershom Scholem. A...
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Minima Moralia
Reflections on a Damaged Life
Theodor Adorno
A reflection on everyday existence in the "sphere of consumption of late Capitalism," this work is Adorno's literary and philosophical masterpiece.
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Beyond Good and Evil
Friedrich Nietzsche
This work dramatically rejects the tradition of Western thought with its notions of truth and God, good and evil. Nietzsche demonstrates that the Christian world is steeped in a false piety and infected with a "slave morality." With wit and energy, he tur

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