The weapon of critique seems to have gone dull. Both dialectics and Enlightenment have been confronted with the accusation of being too elitist, too Eurocentric, too liberal, and have thus lost their power to fascinate. In fact, one-dimensional rhetorics, so sure in their power to resolve without reflecting on the conditions of speaking in each case, are short sighted. At the same time, random political positioning runs the risk of running in circles. It must be oriented by at least a vague idea of some enlightening horizon. Neither totally rejecting critique nor sharpening it in the sense of radicalising it can fulfil these conditions. “Dialectical Enlightenment” should neither be understood as a patronising pedagogy nor as a resolving certainty that eliminates all contradictions.Part of the HAU event series "Fearless Speech".