Potentiality and Reconciliation: a Consideration of Benjamin’s “Critique of Violence” and Adorno’s “Progress”

2017-05-22T03:04:50Z (GMT) by Tim Finney
Walter Benjamin's 1921 essay "Critique of Violence" offers a powerful and unique examination of the legal justification of violence and state power. Benjamin contends that a critique of violence requires a "philosophy of its history," and the model he offers challenges traditional approaches to the question of legal violence: instead of considering the circumstances in which violence may be justified legally, he considers the law itself as a kind of violence, and suggests that modern legal systems struggle to do justice to the violence to which they owe their existence.