Introduction: Interweaving Past and Present
The author approaches Theodor Adorno as a theorist and social scientist concerned with finding an epistemological and methodological mode of scholarly investigation that was free of ideological underpinnings and value judgments. He do not attempt to invalidate, but scrutinize his appeal to aesthetics by considering Weberian rationalism, the conceptual process involved in the formation of 'ideal types' and their application. After explaining Max Weber's rational for this biographical take, the author goes into a more detailed explication of Adorno's aesthetics, its paradoxical nature, and the problematic that ensues. He associates Weber's methodological mode with the psychologist Seymour Papert's concept of constructionism, which branches off from the earlier constructivism of Jean Piaget. Adorno maintained that post-Enlightenment historicists misconstrued history, introducing mythical illusions of a naturally progressing narrative. It is necessary here to consider Adorno's early university training and career as an editorial music critic and theoretician in Frankfurt; this had a profound impact on his epistemological and methodological positioning.