TitleHannah Arendt, in and on America
NameGenovese, Lois M. (author), Charme, Stuart Z (chair), Lees, Andrew (internal member), Rutgers University, Camden Graduate School,
Arendt, Hannah, 1906-1975--Criticism and interpretation,
Arendt, Hannah, 1906-1975--Political and social views
DescriptionHannah Arendt (1906-1975) captured the interest and imagination of scholars and the literati by developing two important concepts: totalitarianism and the banality of evil which influenced the second half of 20th century political thinking and has continued to permeate political and social theories and cultural descriptions. Her theories and analyses provided questions and answers which caution us today on both foreign and public policies and issues of governance and power. Quotes from Arendt’s writings could easily be the subtext for most front page headlines as her range of ideas extended from the social (segregation and education) to the most esoteric philosophic and political systems. This paper will introduce the unique contributions of Hannah Arendt’s major theories and present an overview of Arendt’s important mid-twentieth century political theories formulated while in America, the nation she adopted, and will offer examples of their importance today. Hannah Arendt’s body of work, much of which was translated from German, her native language, into English (and other languages) with continuous reprinting and some revised editions, has become essential scholarship. Three selections have been consistently cited as her major works: The Origins of Totalitarianism (1951), The Human Condition (1958), and Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil (1963). This research relied upon recent publications of Arendt’s essays, interviews, lectures, and correspondence, most interestingly, Arendt’s correspondence with her teacher, philosopher Karl Jaspers, from 1926 until Jaspers’ death in 1967. Arendt’s letters were consulted to and from her husband, Heinrich Blucher, (1936-1968) which provided Arendt with essential intellectual support. They were both professors and members of the New York intelligentsia. The correspondence between Arendt and American writer, Mary McCarthy, (1949-1975) provided Arendt with not only the comradeship between confidants, but also a quiet and trusted therapy needed and respected by each woman. Hannah Arendt’s written and spoken words will form the basis of this presentation.
NoteIncludes bibliographical references (p. 35-37)
Noteby Lois M. Genovese
CollectionCamden Graduate School Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Organization NameRutgers, The State University of New Jersey
RightsThe author owns the copyright to this work.