Benjamin, Walter (1892–1940)

DOI: 10.4324/9780415249126-DC089-1
Version: v1,  Published online: 1998
Retrieved June 15, 2024, from

List of works

  • Benjamin, W. (1974–88) Gesammelte Schriften, ed. R. Tiedemann and H. Schweppenhäuser, Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp.

  • Benjamin, W. (1922) ‘Goethes Wahlverwandschaften’ (Goethe’s Elective Affinities ), in Gesammelte Schriften, vol. 1, 123–202.

    (A riposte to the conventional hagiographies of Goethe.)

  • Benjamin, W. (1935) ‘Das Kunstwerk im Zeitalter seiner technischen Reproduzierbarkeit’ (The Work of Art in the Age of its Mechanical Reproducibility), in Gesammelte Schriften, vol. 1, 431–508.

    (Benjamin’s most famous work, and the source of his ‘aura’ theory. A translation is available in Benjamin (1968).)

  • Benjamin, W. (1940) ‘Über den Begriff der Geschichte’ (On the Concept of History), in Gesammelte Schriften, vol. 1, 691.

    (The ‘Theses on History’ which allegedly document Benjamin’s turn from Marxism.)

  • Benjamin, W. (1968) Illuminations, ed. H. Arendt, New York: Fontana.

    (Contains works useful for a first encounter; the selection is tendentious, however, and the translation unreliable.)

  • Benjamin, W. (1973) Understanding Brecht, London: Verso.

    (An accessible exploration of Marxist cultural theory.)

  • Benjamin, W. (1977) The Origin of German Tragic Drama, London: Verso.

    (Benjamin’s most challenging work.)

References and further reading

  • Buck-Morss, S. (1990) The Dialectics of Seeing. Walter Benjamin and the Arcades Project, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

    (A useful discussion of Benjamin’s major project.)

  • Marcus, L. and Nead, L. (1993) ‘The actuality of Walter Benjamin’, special issue of New Formations Summer 20.

  • Bartram, G. (1994) ‘Walter Benjamin in the Postmodern’, special issue of New Comparison Autumn 18.

  • Roberts, J. (1982) Walter Benjamin, London: Macmillan.

    (An intellectual and personal biography.)

Citing this article:
Roberts, Julian. Bibliography. Benjamin, Walter (1892–1940), 1998, doi:10.4324/9780415249126-DC089-1. Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Taylor and Francis,
Copyright © 1998-2024 Routledge.

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