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A selection of six of Nietzsche's writings. This book is a must-read for any student of philosophy and provides and a comprehensive overview of the work of on the most influential philosophers of the nineteenth century.
The Cultivation of Hatred: The Bourgeois Experience: Victoria to Freud (The Bourgeois Experience: Victoria to Freud)by Peter Gay
With the same sweep, authority, and originality that marked his best-selling Freud: A Life for Our Time, Peter Gay here takes us on a remarkable journey through middle-class Victorian culture. Gay's search through middle-class Victorian culture, illuminated by lively portraits of such daunting figures as Bismarck, Darwin and his acolytes, George Eliot, and the great satirists Daumier and Wilhelm Busch, covers a vast terrain: the relations between men and women, wit, demagoguery, and much more. We discover the multiple ways in which the nineteenth century at once restrained aggressive behavior and licensed it. Aggression split the social universe into insiders and outsiders. "By gathering up communities of insiders," Professor Gay writes, the Victorians "discovered--only too often invented--a world of strangers beyond the pale, of individuals and classes, races and nations it was perfectly proper to debate, patronize, ridicule, bully, exploit, or exterminate." The aggressions so channeled or bottled could not be contained forever. Ultimately, they exploded in the First World War.
The eighteenth-century Enlightenment marks the beginning of the modern age, when the scientific method and belief in reason and progress came to hold sway over the Western world. In the twentieth century, however, the Enlightenment has often been judged harshly for its apparently simplistic optimism. Now a master historian goes back to the sources to give a fully rounded account of its true accomplishments.
Mr. Gay characterizes "The Recovery of Nerve" 18th century change of life to a safer more predictable lifestyle. In this book which is a social history of the Enlightenment, he describes the philosphes' environment, their view of progress, of science, of art, of society, and of politics.
Norton celebrates the 150th anniversary of Freud's birth by reissuing Peter Gay's best-selling biography, featuring a new introduction.
"Rich, learned, briskly written, maddening yet necessary study."--Lee Siegel, New York Times Book Review Peter Gay explores the shocking modernist rebellion that, beginning in the 1840s, transformed art, literature, music, and film. Modernism presents a thrilling pageant of heretics that includes Oscar Wilde, Pablo Picasso, D. W. Griffiths, James Joyce, Virginia Woolf, T. S. Eliot, Walter Gropius, Arnold Schoenberg, and (of course!) Andy Warhol.
A biography of the greatest musical mind in Western history Mozart's unshakable hold on the public's consciousness can only be strengthened by historian and biographer Peter Gay's concise and deft look at the genius's life. Mozart traces the development of the man whose life was a whirlwind of achievement, and the composer who pushed every instrument to its limit and every genre of classical music into new realms. .
Mozart's short life (only 35 years) were astoundingly productive. This book tells the story of his life, and provides useful information about his major compositions and associations. There are more comprehensive biographies of Mozart, but this one is not a difficult book to read and will provide enough information to augment the experience of listening to his amazing music.
In this poignant book, a renowned historian tells of his youth as an assimilated, anti-religious Jew in Nazi Germany from 1933 to 1939-"the story," says Peter Gay, "of a poisoning and how I dealt with it." With his customary eloquence and analytic acumen, Gay describes his family, the life they led, and the reasons they did not emigrate sooner, and he explores his own ambivalent feelings-then and now-toward Germany and the Germans. Gay relates that the early years of the Nazi regime were relatively benign for his family: as a schoolboy at the Goethe Gymnasium he experienced no ridicule or attacks, his father's business prospered, and most of the family's non-Jewish friends remained supportive. He devised survival strategies-stamp collecting, watching soccer, and the like-that served as screens to block out the increasingly oppressive world around him. Even before the events of 1938-39, culminating in Kristallnacht, the family was convinced that they must leave the country. Gay describes the bravery and ingenuity of his father in working out this difficult emigration process, the courage of the non-Jewish friends who helped his family during their last bitter months in Germany, and the family's mounting panic as they witnessed the indifference of other countries to their plight and that of others like themselves. Gay's account-marked by candor, modesty, and insight-adds an important and curiously neglected perspective to the history of German Jewry.
The Naked Heart: The Bourgeois Experience Victoria to Freud (The Bourgeois Experience: Victoria to Freud)by Peter Gay
In The Naked Heart, Peter Gay explores the bourgeoisie's turn inward. At the very time that industrialists, inventors, statesmen, and natural scientists were conquering new objective worlds, Gay writes, "the secret life of the self had grown into a favorite and wholly serious indoor sport." Following the middle class's preoccupation with inwardness through its varied cultural expressions (such as fiction, art, history, and autobiography), Gay turns also to the letters and confessional diaries of both obscure and prominent men and women. These revealing documents help to round out a sparkling portrait of an age.
THE ENLIGHTENMENT has long been the victim of uninformed or hostile criticisms. Even so respected a source as the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary defines the Enlightenment as "shallow and pretentious intellectualism, unreasonable contempt for authority and tradition," thus collecting in one sentence most of our current prejudices. In this provocative book--at once a scholarly study and a vigorous polemic--Peter Gay sets out to shatter old myths, to sort out illusion from reality, and to restore the men of the Enlightenment--Voltaire, Rousseau, Diderot--to the esteem they deserve. The nine related essays in The Party of Humanity fall into three divisions: three are on Voltaire, presenting the great philosopher as a tough-minded, realistic man of letters who tried to reshape his world, rather than as merely brittle and shallow wit. Then, three essays characterize the French Enlightenment as a whole, and seek for the unity underlying the diversity of tempers and attitudes among its leaders. The last three, which include Mr. Gay's well-known critique of Carl Becker's The Heavenly City of the Eighteenth Century Philosophers, are polemics against widely accepted views of the Enlightenment. The longest chapter here is a detailed examination of Rousseau, the philosopher, and of his reputation among his interpreters. What all nine essays have in common, apart from their portrayal of the philosophers as serious and engage partisans of humanity, is that they are all essays in the "social history of ideas"; they all treat ideas as inseparable from the specific social and cultural setting from which they emerge and which they affect.
Pleasure Wars: The Bourgeois Experience Victoria to Freud (The Bourgeois Experience: Victoria to Freud)by Peter Gay
A master historian shows us a new side of the Victorian Era--the role of the Bourgeois as reactionaries, revolutionaries, and middle-of-the-roaders in the passage of high culture toward modernism. The Victorians in this richly peopled narrative maneuvered through decades marked by frequent shifts in taste, some seeking safety in traditional styles, others drawn to the avant-garde of artists, composers, and writers. Peter Gay's panoramic survey offers a fresh view of the ideas and sensibilities that dominated Victorian culture.
A revelatory work that examines the intricate relationship between history and literature, truth and fiction--with some surprising conclusions. Focusing on three literary masterpieces--Charles Dickens's Bleak House (1853), Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary (1857), and Thomas Mann's Buddenbrooks (1901)--Peter Gay, a leading cultural historian, demonstrates that there is more than one way to read a novel. Typically, readers believe that fiction, especially the Realist novels that dominated Western culture for most of the nineteenth century and beyond, is based on historical truth and that great novels possess a documentary value. That trust, Gay brilliantly shows, is misplaced; novels take their own path to reality. Using Dickens, Flaubert, and Mann as his examples, Gay explores their world, their craftsmanship, and their minds. In the process, he discovers that all three share one overriding quality: a resentment and rage against the society that sustains the novel itself. Using their stylish writing as a form of revenge, they deal out savage reprisals, which have become part of our Western literary canon. A New York Times Notable Book and a Best Book of 2002.
"This is cultural history of the first order, and it is liberal and humane history at its very best."--David Cannadine An essential work for anyone who wishes to understand the social history of the nineteenth century, Schnitzler's Century is the culmination of Peter Gay's thirty-five years of scholarship on bourgeois culture and society. Using Arthur Schnitzler, the sexually emboldened Viennese playwright, as his master of ceremonies, Gay offers a brilliant reexamination of the hundred-year period that began with the defeat of Napoleon and concluded with the conflagration of 1914. This is a defining work by one of America's greatest historians.
A seminal work as melodious and haunting as the era it chronicles, now reissued with a new introduction. First published in 1968, Weimar Culture is one of the masterworks of Peter Gay's distinguished career. A study of German culture between the two wars, the book brilliantly traces the rise of the artistic, literary, and musical culture that bloomed ever so briefly in the 1920s amid the chaos of Germany's tenuous post-World War I democracy, and crashed violently in the wake of Hitler's rise to power. Despite the ephemeral nature of the Weimar democracy, the influence of its culture was profound and far-reaching, ushering in a modern sensibility in the arts that dominated Western culture for most of the twentieth century. Vivid and eminently readable, Weimar Culture is the finest introduction for the casual reader and historian alike. "[A]n enormously rich, intriguing, and exciting essay.... A major contribution to the study..."--The New York Times
With his usual wit and élan, esteemed historian Peter Gay enters the contentious, long-standing debates over the romantic period. Here, in this concise and inviting volume, he reformulates the definition of romanticism and provides a fresh account of the immense achievements of romantic writers and artists in all media. Gay's scope is wide, his insights sharp. He takes on the recurring questions about how to interpret romantic figures and their works. Who qualifies to be a romantic? What ties together romantic figures who practice in different countries, employ different media, even live in different centuries? How is modernism indebted to romanticism, if at all? Guiding readers through the history of the romantic movement across Britain, France, Germany, and Switzerland, Gay argues that the best way to conceptualize romanticism is to accept its complicated nature and acknowledge that there is no "single basket" to contain it. Gay conceives of romantics in "families," whose individual members share fundamental values but retain unique qualities. He concludes by demonstrating that romanticism extends well into the twentieth century, where its deep and lasting impact may be measured in the work of writers such as T. S. Eliot and Virginia Woolf.
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