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This book reconstructs the traces of nihilism that Walter Benjamin took from Friedrich Nietzsche that define both his conception of paintings and the avant-garde, and his method of political motion. It retraces the eccentric direction of Benjamin's philosophical discourse within the illustration of the fashionable as a spot of “permanent catastrophe”, the place he makes an attempt to beat the Nietzschean nihilism via messianic desire. utilizing conventions from literary feedback this ebook explores the numerous assets of Benjamin's idea, demonstrating that at the back of the materialism which Benjamin contains into his Theses at the proposal of History is hidden Nietzsche's nihilism. Mauro Ponzi analyses how Benjamin’s Arcades Project uses figures akin to Baudelaire, Marx, Aragon, Proust and Blanqui as allegories to provide an explanation for many elements of modernity. the writer argues that Benjamin makes use of Baudelaire as a paradigm to stress the darkish facet of the fashionable period, supplying us a key to the translation of communicative and cultural traits of today. 

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