In 1951, Theodor W. Adorno published one of the classics of contemporary philosophical reflection: Minima Moralia, Meditations on the Offended Life. Through one hundred and fifty-three aphorisms assembled in a heterogeneous montage, the German thinker brings out the cultural vision on the horizon of western society after the great tragedy of the Second World War. The form of the fragment, which the author even calls ‘crumbs’, becomes functional to delineate a drift where the subject itself seems to dissolve. He writes: ‘If the subject is disappearing today, aphorisms take on the weighty responsibility of considering that which is disappearing itself as essential’.
The form of fragment becomes for Adorno a tool to look freely at the looming negative. This vision can be attributable to the landscape that stands out in front of current events such as wars, pandemics, climate collapse, and a regressive disappearance of the subject in the agora of a society cloaked in uncertainty. If, in the 1950s, the German philosopher wanted to express ‘the experience of the intellectual in emigration’, today his thought, in the era of painful and inemendable wandering, as opposed to a welcome allowed only if certified, becomes extremely topical.
A quote from aphorism 122 of Minima Moralia, Monogrammes, will be Ariadne’s thread to tackle the labyrinth of our creative journey with: ‘Love is the capacity to perceive similarity in the dissimilar’. The phrase will be a compass in the magmatic stormy sea of our present, since every artist, every intellectual, has the moral obligation to be a bearer of difference. This difference, however, would be sterile if it were not permeated with love, passion capable of recognising the similar and bringing contradictions back into languages and contents that do not deny the idea of redemption and salvation. I Love You. I (individual / difference) Love You (other / similar). We attempt to recognise ‘the similarity in the dissimilar’