Timely anachronisms
in Didi-Huberman and the image
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This chapter shifts its attention to the role anachronism plays in Didi-Huberman’s thinking. Art history as a narrative structure has traditionally been sustained by chronological time, with art historians implicitly drawing on Hegel’s teleological progression as a model for artistic improvement. When the Hegelian narrative establishing art’s history is exhausted, however, what models of time are available? Didi-Huberman adds his voice to the anti-Hegelian current characterising French thought since the 1960s. Like Michel Foucault and Jacques Derrida before him, Didi-Huberman avoids a direct confrontation with Hegel, but engages through intermediaries Aby Warburg and Walter Benjamin. Didi-Huberman rereads the great avant-garde montage experiments of the 1920s and 1930s in relation to a general antagonism to linear understandings of time.

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