The Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben has always been an original reader of texts, understanding their many rich and multiple historical, aesthetic, and political meanings and effects. In Profanations, Agamben has assembled for the first time some of his most pivotal essays on photography, the novel, and film. A meditation on memory and oblivion, on what is lost and what remains, Profanations proves yet again that Agamben is one of the most provocative writers of our times.

 

In ten essays, Agamben rethinks approaches to a series of literary and philosophical problems: the relation between genius, ego, and theories of subjectivity; the problem of messianic time as explicated in both images and lived experience; parody as a literary paradigm; the potential of magic to provide an ethical canon.