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Horkheimer, Max

Max Horkheimer (hôrk´hī´mər, hôr´kī´–), 1895–1973, German philosopher and sociologist. As director (1930–58) of the Institute for Social Research in Frankfurt, he played an important role in the development of critical theory and Western Marxism. In Eclipse of Reason (1947) and Dialectic of Enlightenment (1947, written with Theodor Adorno), he developed a critique of scientific positivism, whose "instrumental rationality" had become a form of domination in both capitalist and socialist countries. Against an older, deterministic Marxism, he argued that culture and consciousness are partly independent of economics, and his ideas about liberation and consumer society continue to influence contemporary empirical sociologists.

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Horkheimer, Max

Horkheimer, Max (1895–1973) A leading member of the Frankfurt Institute for Social Research, he is best known in sociology for his critique of the dominant rationality of late capitalism. His most important books are The Eclipse of Reason (1947) and Critique of Instrumental Reason (1967).

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