The surviving correspondence between Walter Benjamin and Theodor W. Adorno, which appears here for the first time in its entirety in English translation, documents one of the most remarkable and intense intellectual relationships of modern times. In over a hundred letters, which range from brief and cordial exchanges to dense and detailed theoretical elucidations, it is now possible to trace the complex and developing character of Benjamin’s and Adorno’s attitudes to one another, and not least to many of their mutual friends, like Sholem, Bloch and Brecht.Both correspondents express their sharply formulated opinions in an extremely candid and vivid fashion. When this book appeared in German, it caused a sensation because it included passages previously excised in other versions of the letters – passages in which the two friends celebrate their own intimacy with frank remarks about other people. The animated discussion of central concepts in Benjamin’s work makes the letters an invaluable resource for all students of this complex and enigmatic figure. And, naturally, the letters reveal the correspondents’ hopes and fears, and often their illusions, in the context of rapidly unfolding political and social developments in a drastic period of modern history.The letters are extensively annotated and the subjects discussed are cross-referenced with the relevant passages in the complete editions of Benjamin’s and Adorno’s work.