Georg Lukács: An Intellectual Biography

“Georg Lukács has become a historical figure,” the Zeitschrift für Ideengeschichte’s editorial of the 2014 special issue on ‘Commissar Lukács’ announced. “Astonishingly,” they continued, “there is no extensive biography on him, although his life alone reads like a novel.” It is this hitherto lacking biography of the Hungarian literary theorist, philosopher and political intellectual Georg Lukács (1885–1971) that, as a Heisenberg fellow, I will set out to write. Though it will not be written as a novel, I will try to never lose sight of the novelesque within this extraordinary life – for Lukács himself never stopped meditating on the relation between the form of the novel and the form of life, or more generally: He never stopped to ask how life, how our life under modern, capitalist (but also under post-capitalist, socialist) conditions may attain a form that can be lived consciously and affirmatively.

Heisenberg Programme of the German Research Foundation (DFG) 2020–2025
Head researcher(s): Patrick Eiden-Offe