Collection of six landmark publications by one of the most eminent philosopher’s of the 20th century. Already arrested by the Gestapo, upon her release in 1933, Hannah Arendt fled Nazi-Germany and wrote, among others, these following books which we offer as a unique collection. While the books in this collection are from different sources, it is important to mention that the first edition of “The Human Condition”, which is included here, is an astonishing association copy and was the personal copy of Hannah Arendt’s friend Alfred Kazin, with his ownership penciled onto the front free endpaper, a compliment’s card from Hannah Arendt laid in and some significant markings in pencil by Kazin within the text, highlighting his interest in certain statements by his friend Hannah. The collection includes in order of publication: 1. Hannah Arendt – The Origins of Totalitarianism – (First Edition, New York, 1951) / 2. Hanna Arendt – Rahel Varnhagen – The Life of a Jewess (First Edition, London, 1957) – [Publications of the Leo Baeck Institute of Jews from Germany] / 3. Hannah Arendt – The Human Condition (First Edition, Chicago, 1958) – Alfred Kazin’s personal copy with his name signed in full to the titlepage and a compliment’s card from the author Hannah Arendt, loosely inserted / 4. Hannah Arendt – Between Past and Future – Six Exercises in Political Thought (First Edition of a collection of essays in bookform, New York, 1961) – Name of preowner on endpaper / 5. Hannah Arendt – Eichmann in Jerusalem – A Report on the Banality of Evil (First Edition, New York, 1963) – Name of preowner on endpaper / 6. Revised and Enlarged Edition of Hannah Arendt’s – Eichmann in Jerusalem – A Report on the Banality of Evil (Second, enlarged and revised Edition, New York, 1964) – Name of preowner on endpaper / 7. Hannah Arendt – On Violence (First Edition, New York, 1969/1970) – Name of preowner on endpaper //
New York, London, Chicago, Harcourt, Brace & Company / Viking / Leo Baeck Institute / University of Chicago Press, 1951-1970. Octavo. Collation: IX, 477, XIV, 222, VI, 332, 246, 275, 312, 106 pages. All editions are in original Hardcover and with the exception of the first edition of “The Origins of Toitalitarianism” are in their original dustjackets in protective Mylar. All Volumes in excellent, very good+ or even near fine condition with only minor signs of external wear. Minor stain to lower edge and binding of the first edition of “Eichmann in Jerusalem”. The collection also includes an important special issue on Hannah Arendt, the critical publication “Text + Kritik Volume 166/167” with Anecdotes of contemporaries, Letters / Postcards to Walter Benjamin etc.
“Niemand hat das Recht zu gehorchen” (Hannah Arendt)
[Loosely inserted in the Volume of “Rahel Varnhagen – The Life of a Jewess”, is a newspaper-clipping of an original obituary, written by british political theorist, Professor Sir Bernard Crick. He writes about Arendt: Hannah Arendt, whose death was noted briefly on December 6, will be recognized as perhaps the most original and important political philosopher of our times. She has had little impact in this country, however: no British distinctions are to be found among her long list of visiting professorships, honorary degrees, awards and prizes. Superficially the importance that she attached to the explication of key concepts is similar to that of our Oxford analytical school […]. A pupil of Karl Jaspers who then fled to Palestine in 1933 before going to America in 1941, she showed in her ethics a subtle blending of the classical humanist tradition and of modern existentialism. In the “Origins of Totalitarianism” (1951), Dr.Arendt explored the significance of three terrible truths: that Nazism had been at most times a popular mass movement; that human dignity could be broken in the camps so that people ceased, while going on living, to be human; and that the desire for comprehensive and prophetic accounts of human history, which she called ideology, easily led to totalitarianism. […] in her “On Violence” (1969), brevity and clarity went together in a wise and radical attack, both on those who make a cult of violence and on those who feel guilty at any exercise of power.
Her “Eichmann in Jerusalem” (1963) brought [her] notoriety and scurrilous abuse. Her assumption that the Jewish peoples of Eastern Europe had been relatively easily rounded up because they lacked a political tradition of action, was taken as a betrayal by those jewish writers who were beginning to reinterpret history through Zionist or modern Israeli eyes. Her picture of Eichmann himself as exhibiting “the banality of evil”, of being a mundane bureaucrat, not an apocalyptic monster, was not appreciated; nor was her condemnation of the trial. Her views were resolutely classical, neither religious nor utilitaria: more resistance should have been offered, even if hopeless; and that the law of the city was polluted by such a show trial – Eichmann should have simply been killed by those who found him. Theory and practice were to her, always very close. Her breadth and boldness, scholarship and sense of relevance will be hard to match” (Sir Bernard Crick).
Hannah Arendt (14 October 1906 – 4 December 1975), was a German-born American political philosopher. Her many books and articles have had a lasting influence on political theory and philosophy. Arendt is widely considered one of the most important political thinkers of the 20th century.
Arendt was born in Linden in 1906, to a Jewish family. At the age of three, her family moved to Königsberg, the capital of East Prussia, so that her father’s syphilis could be treated. Paul Arendt had contracted the disease in his youth, and it was thought to be in remission when Arendt was born. He died when she was seven. Arendt was raised in a politically progressive, secular family. Her mother was an ardent supporter of the Social Democrats. After completing her secondary education in Berlin, she studied at the University of Marburg under Martin Heidegger, with whom she had a brief affair. She obtained her doctorate in philosophy writing on Love and Saint Augustine at the University of Heidelberg in 1929 under the direction of the existentialist philosopher, Karl Jaspers.
Hannah Arendt married Günther Stern in 1929, but soon began to encounter increasing antisemitism in 1930s Nazi Germany. Adolf Hitler came to power in 1933, and while researching antisemitic propaganda for the Zionist Federation of Germany in Berlin that year, Arendt was arrested for collected antisemitic research at the Prussian State Library and briefly imprisoned by the Gestapo. On release, she fled Germany, living in Czechoslovakia and Switzerland before settling in Paris. There she worked for Youth Aliyah, assisting young Jews to emigrate to British Mandate of Palestine (now Israel). Divorcing Stern in 1937, she married Heinrich Blücher in 1940, but when Germany invaded France in 1940 she was detained by the French as an alien, despite having been stripped of her German citizenship in 1937. She escaped and made her way to the United States in 1941 via Portugal. She settled in New York, which remained her principal residence for the rest of her life. She became a writer and editor and worked for the Jewish Cultural Reconstruction, becoming an American citizen in 1950. With the publication of The Origins of Totalitarianism in 1951, her reputation as a thinker and writer was established and a series of works followed. These included the books The Human Condition in 1958, as well as Eichmann in Jerusalem and On Revolution in 1963. She taught at many American universities, while declining tenure-track appointments. She died suddenly of a heart attack in 1975, at the age of 69, leaving her last work, The Life of the Mind, unfinished.
Her works cover a broad range of topics, but she is best known for those dealing with the nature of power and evil, as well as politics, direct democracy, authority, and totalitarianism. In the popular mind she is best remembered for the controversy surrounding the trial of Adolf Eichmann, her attempt to explain how ordinary people become actors in totalitarian systems, which was considered by some an apologia, and for the phrase “the banality of evil”. She is commemorated by institutions and journals devoted to her thinking, the Hannah Arendt Prize for political thinking, and on stamps, street names and schools, amongst other things. (Wikipedia)