Walking in Berlin: A Flaneur in the Capital

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$17.95  $16.69
MIT Press
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4.9 X 7.7 X 0.9 inches | 0.68 pounds

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About the Author
Franz Hessel (1880-1941) was a German writer and translator, father to Stephane Hessel, friend and colleague to Walter Benjamin, and the model for Jim in Henri-Pierre Roché's novel (and Truffaut's film), Jules and Jim.
"Hessel describes the small joys and ephemeral pleasures of big-city life in the age of commodity display. The Berlin that comes alive on these pages was destroyed in the last world war, which took as its victims both Hessel and his comrade in flanerie, Walter Benjamin. Hence the poignancy of this beautifully written book. Today we know the fragility of urban dreamworlds, drawn into the orbit of fashion's temporality. The urban pleasures captured here come to us with a sense of foreboding." - Susan Buck-Morss, Distinguished Professor, CUNY Graduate Center

"This is a lively translation of Franz Hessel's literary peregrinations through Weimar Berlin, as he takes in the historically saturated sights and sounds of the most self-consciously modern of the early twentieth-century metropolises, from its boulevards, parks, cafés, and courtyards to its department stores, theaters, dance halls, and slaughterhouses." - Howard Eiland, Literature Section, MIT; cotranslator of The Arcades Project

"Hessel's psychic geography, channeled by subterranean laws, sees neon and reflective glass though the eyes of a lover of antiquity. His Pantheon -- the gasometer in Wilmersdorf. Drifting us through a Berlin we know and no longer know, we move as Hessel in search of lost or other types of elsewhere." - Esther Leslie, Professor of Political Aesthetics, Birkbeck, University of London