Florian Klinger

Neubauer Family Assistant Professor
Department of Germanic Studies and the College

Florian Klinger’s work concerns the form we create each time we take something as something: a distinction consisting of, for example, a judgment of perception, a hand gesture, a combination of words, a musical phrase, a moral decision, a scientific hypothesis, or a sentence in court. Currently, two parallel projects explore the notion of life form in the pragmatist tradition at large, and the principle form = force in early 20th century poetics, especially in Kafka, Valéry, Musil, and Beckett.

Klinger’s book Urteilen, an inquiry into the structure of human judgment in modernity, was published by Diaphanes Verlag, Zürich/Berlin, in 2011. A second book, Theorie der Form. Gerhard Richter und die Kunst des pragmatischen Zeitalters, a pragmatist account of aesthetic form, will be forthcoming in 2013. He also co-edited a volume of essays on the topic of latency, Latenz Blinde Passagiere in den Geisteswissenschaften.

A graduate of the Peter Szondi Institute of Comparative Literature at Freie Universität Berlin, Klinger received his PhD in comparative literature from Stanford University in 2010. He has had a previous career as a professional musician and holds an artist diploma, violin, from the Hochschule für Musik und Theater München. Klinger will remain a junior fellow at the Society of Fellows at Harvard University through the summer of 2014.

Klinger joined the University of Chicago faculty in 2012.