Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book


Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Allan Bloom  

Pen Name: None

Genre:

Audience: Adult;

Born: September 14, 1930 in Indianapolis, Indiana

Died: October 7, 1992 in Chicago, Illinois


-- Allan Bloom on WorldCat -- http://www.worldcat.org/search?q=allan+bloom


Illinois Connection

At the age of 16 Allan and his family moved to Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information

Allan Bloom was a lecturer in Liberal Arts at the University of Chicago from 1955-1960. In 1979 he returned to the University of Chicago as professor of philosophy and political science with the Committee on Social Thought and the College until 1992.


Published Works Expand for more information


Titles At Your Library

Shakespeare's Politics
ISBN: 0226060411

University of Chicago Press. 1996

Taking the classical view that the political shapes man's consciousness, Allan Bloom considers Shakespeare as a profoundly political Renaissance dramatist. He aims to recover Shakespeare's ideas and beliefs and to make his work once again a recognized source for the serious study of moral and political problems.

In essays looking at Julius Caesar, Othello, and The Merchant of Venice, Bloom shows how Shakespeare presents a picture of man that does not assume privileged access for only literary criticism. With this claim, he argues that political philosophy offers a comprehensive framework within which the problems of the Shakespearean heroes can be viewed. In short, he argues that Shakespeare was an eminently political author. Also included is an essay by Harry V. Jaffa on the limits of politics in King Lear.

"A very good book indeed . . . one which can be recommended to all who are interested in Shakespeare." —G. P. V. Akrigg

"This series of essays reminded me of the scope and depth of Shakespeare's original vision. One is left with the impression that Shakespeare really had figured out the answers to some important questions many of us no longer even know to ask."-Peter A. Thiel, CEO, PayPal, Wall Street Journal

Allan Bloom was the John U. Nef Distinguished Service Professor on the Committee on Social Thought and the co-director of the John M. Olin Center for Inquiry into the Theory and Practice of Democracy at the University of Chicago. Harry V. Jaffa is professor emeritus at Claremont McKenna College and Claremont Graduate School.

Closing of the American Mind
ISBN: 0613185110

Turtleback Books: A Division of Sanval. 1988

"The Closing of the American Mind, " a publishing phenomenon in hardcover, is now a paperback literary event. In this acclaimed number one national best-seller, one of our country's most distinguished political philosophers argues that the social/political crisis 20th-century America is really an intellectual crisis. Allan Bloom's sweeping analysis is essential to understanding America today. It has fired the imagination of a public ripe for change.

Giants and Dwarfs : Essays 1960-1990
ISBN: 0671747266

Touchstone Books. 1991

A volume of wide-ranging essays deals with contemporary politics, modern thinkers, and today's universities, and examines works by Plato, Shakespeare, Swift, and Rousseau

Love and Friendship
ISBN: 0671891200

Simon & Schuster. 1994

Argues that basic human connections--love and friendship--are withering away, and asserts that humans' impoverished feelings are rooted in an impoverished language of love

Shakespeare on Love and Friendship
ISBN: 0226060454

University of Chicago Press. 2000

"No one can make us love love as much as Shakespeare, and no one can make us despair of it as effectively as he does." William Shakespeare is the only classical author to remain widely popular—not only in America but throughout the world—and Allan Bloom argues that this is because no other writer holds up a truer mirror to human nature. Unlike the Romantics and other moderns, Shakespeare has no project for the betterment or salvation of mankind—his poetry simply gives us eyes to see what is there. In particular, we see the full variety of erotic connections, from the "star-crossed" devotions of Romeo and Juliet to the failed romance of Troilus and Cressida to the problematic friendship of Falstaff and Hal.

This volume includes essays on five plays, Romeo and Juliet, Anthony and Cleopatra, Measure for Measure, Troilus and Cressida, and The Winter's Tale, and within these Bloom meditates on Shakespeare's work as a whole. He also draws on his formidable knowledge of Plato, Rousseau, and others to bring both ancients and moderns into the conversation. The result is a truly synoptic treatment of eros—not only a philosophical reflection on Shakespeare, but a survey of the human spirit and its tendency to seek what Bloom calls the "connectedness" of love and friendship.

These highly original interpretations of the plays convey a deep respect for their author and a deep conviction that we still have much to learn from him. In Bloom's view, we live in a love-impoverished age he asks us to turn once more to Shakespeare because the playwright gives us a rich version of what is permanent in human nature without sharing our contemporary assumptions about erotic love.

"Provocative and illuminating." —Michiko Kakutani, New York Times

"A brilliant analysis of the erotic ugliness and the balancing erotic grace of The Winter's Tale . . . and Bloom makes more sense of [Measure for Measure] than anyone else I have read." —A. S. Byatt, Washington Post Book World

At his death in 1992, Allan Bloom was the John U. Nef Distinguished Service Professor in the Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago. He is the author of several books, including Shakespeare's Politics (with Harry V. Jaffa) and The Closing of the American Mind.


Awards

Prix Jean-Jacques Rousseau from City of Geneva, 1987, for The Closing of the American Mind.