Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Some Lines from Benjamin

"It should be pointed out that certain correlative concepts retain their meaning, and possibly their foremost significance, if they are [not a priori] referred exclusively to man. One might, for example, speak of an unforgettable life or moment even if all men had forgotten it. If the nature of such a life or moment required that it be unforgotten, that predicate would not imply a falsehood but merely a claim not fulfilled by men, and probably also a reference to a realm in which it is fulfilled: God’s remembrance."
- Walter Benjamin

Walter Benjamin, “Task of the Translator,” Illuminations, ed. Hannah Arendt, trans. Harry Zohn (New York: Shocken Books, 1969), 70. Hannah Arendt quoted this passage in her essay on Walter Benjamin and the differences are included in brackets. See Hannah Arendt, “Walter Benjamin,” Men in Dark Times (New York: Harcourt, Brace, and World, INC, 1968), 203.