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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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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I Think I Am: Philip K. Dick
Laurence A. Rickels
For years, noted writer Laurence A. Rickels often found himself compared to novelist Philip K. Dick—though in fact Rickels had never read any of the science fiction writer's work. When he finally read his first Philip K. Dick novel, while researching...
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Walter Benjamin and Bertolt Brecht
The Story of a Friendship
Erdmut Wizisla
Erdmut Wizisla's groundbreaking work explores for the first time the important friendship between Walter Benjamin, the acclaimed critic and literary theorist, and Bertolt Brecht, one of the twentieth century's most influential theater artists and poets, during the crucial interwar years in Berlin.
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Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals
Immanuel Kant
Considered one of the most profound, influential, and important works of philosophy, Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals introduces the famous Categorical Imperative and lays down a foundation for all of Immanuel Kant's writings. In it, Kant...
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The Origin of German Tragic Drama
Walter Benjamin
Benjamin's most sustained and original work, considered to be one of the main sources of literary modernism in the twentieth century. "Walter Benjamin is the most important German aesthetician and literary critic of this century." --George Steiner...
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The Book of Dead Philosophers
Simon Critchley
In this collection of brief lives (and deaths) of nearly two hundred of the world's greatest thinkers, noted philosopher Simon Critchley creates a register of mortality that is tragic, amusing, absurd, and exemplary.
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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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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 Test Drive
Avital Ronell
The Test Drive deals with the war perpetrated by highly determined reactionary forces on science and research. How does the government at once promote and prohibit scientific testing and undercut the importance of experimentation? To what extent is...
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The Gift
Creativity and the Artist in the Modern World
Lewis Hyde
By now a modern classic, The Gift is a brilliantly orchestrated defense of the value of creativity and of its importance in a culture increasingly governed by money and overrun with commodities. Widely available again after twenty-five years, this...
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A Guide to Philosophy in Six Hours and Fifteen Minutes
Witold Gombrowicz
Recommended by Paul, City Lights Books In this inspired book, the eminent Polish author Witold Gombrowicz reflects on seven great philosophers. He discusses Kant, Hegel, Schopenhauer, Kierkegaard, Sartre, and Heidegger in six "one-hour" essays...
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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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Adorno in America
David Jenemann
The German philosopher and cultural critic Theodor W. Adorno was one of the towering intellectual figures of the twentieth century, and between 1938 and 1953 he lived in exile in the United States. In the first in-depth account of this period of...
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Imperial San Francisco
Urban Power, Earthly Ruin
Gray Brechin
First published in 1999, this celebrated history of San Francisco traces the exploitation of both local and distant regions by prominent families--the Hearsts, de Youngs, Spreckelses, and others--who gained power through mining, ranching, water and...

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