1st Edition

The Routledge International Handbook of Simmel Studies

Edited By Gregor Fitzi Copyright 2021
    420 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    420 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    The Routledge International Handbook of Simmel Studies documents the richness, variety, and creativity of contemporary international research on Georg Simmel’s work. Starting with the established role of Simmel as a classical author of sociology, and including the growing interest in his work in the domain of philosophy, this volume explores the research on Simmel in several further disciplines including art, social aesthetics, literature, theatre, essayism, and critical theory, as well as in the debates on cosmopolitanism, economic pathologies of life, freedom, modernity, religion, and nationalism. Bringing together contributions from leading specialists in research on Simmel, the book is thematically arranged in order to highlight the relevance of his oeuvre for different fields of recent research, with a further section tracing the most important paths that Simmel’s reception has taken in the world. As such, it will appeal to scholars across the social sciences and humanities, and to sociologists, philosophers, and social theorists in particular, with interest in Simmel’s thought.

    General introduction

    Gregor Fitzi

    PART I: Biography

    1. Simmel’s life: an unexplored continent

    Gregor Fitzi

    PART II: Sociology

    2. Simmel’s resonance with contemporary sociological debates

    Olli Pyyhtinen

    3. Relations, forms, and the representation of the social life: Georg Simmel and the challenge of relational sociology as Lebenssoziologie

    Davide Ruggieri

    4. Boundaries as relations: Georg Simmel’s relational theory of boundaries

    Natàlia Cantó-Milà

    5. The actuality of a sociological research programme

    Gregor Fitzi

    PART III: Philosophy

    6. Relativism: a theoretical and practical philosophical programme

    Matthieu Amat

    7. The art of complicating things

    Denis Thouard

    8. Georg Simmel, Hans Blumenberg, and philosophical anthropology

    Andrea Borsari

    9. Simmel’s ‘late life metaphysics’

    Gregor Fitzi

    PART IV: Art and aesthetics

    10. Art and knowledge in Simmel’s thought and writing style

    Claudia Portioli

    11. Social aesthetics

    Barbara Carnevali and Andrea Pinotti

    12. Philosophy of art

    Ingo Meyer

    13. Framing, painting, seeing: Simmel’s Rembrandt and the sense of modernity

    Thomas Kemple

    PART V: Literature and theatre

    14. Literary practice and immanent literary theory

    Monika Tokarzewska

    15. The Goethean heritage in Simmel’s work

    Paola Giacomoni

    16. Simmel: the actor and his roles

    François Thomas

    PART VI: Essayism and critical theory

    17. Georg Simmel and the ‘newspaper sociology’ of the 1920s and 1930s

    Barbara Thériault

    18. Georg Simmel and critical theory

    Vincenzo Mele

    PART VII: Topics of debate

    19. Freedom: an open debate

    Monica Martinelli

    20. Georg Simmel’s theory of religion

    Volkhard Krech

    21. Georg Simmel: war, nation, and Europe

    Patrick Watier

    22. Simmel’s cosmopolitanism

    Austin Harrington

    23. Economic pathologies of life

    Arthur Bueno

    PART VIII: Lines of reception

    24. Simmel’s American legacy revisited

    Milos Brocic and Daniel Silver

    25. Goffman, Schutz, and the ‘secret of the other’: on the American sociological reception of Simmel’s ‘das Geheimnis des Anderen

    Gary D. Jaworski

    26. Traces of Simmel in Latin America: modernity, nation, and memory

    Esteban Vernik


    Gregor Fitzi is President of the Simmel Gesellschaft. He is the author of The Challenge of Modernity: Simmel’s Sociological Theory and the co-editor of the three-volume set Populism and the Crisis of Democracy. He is editor of the journal Simmel Studies.