The article assesses Theodor W. Adorno’s relevance today by engaging contemporary interests in form that have led to a surprising renaissance of his thought in recent years (in Tilo Wesche and Josh Robinson, among others). Comparing and contrasting this most recent focus with older trajectories of reception, the article suggests that Adorno’s concept of form is not as easily dislodged from its theoretical moorings as recent appropriations tend to argue: his insistence on form as what rigorously (and painfully) demarcates an artwork from its surrounding contexts is perhaps an antidote to current all-inclusive conceptualizations of form.

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