- Faye, Emmanuel. Heidegger: the Introduction of Nazism into Philosophy. Trans. Michael B. Smith. New Haven: Yale UP, 2009.
- Maier-Katkin, Daniel. Stranger from Abroad: Hannah Arendt, Martin Heidegger, Friendship and Forgiveness. New York: Norton, 2010.
It may seem surprising that so many books continue to be written debating Martin Heidegger’s Nazi affiliations, since the fact that Heidegger was a Nazi has never been in dispute. How could it be, when the great philosopher took office as rector of Freiburg University in April 1933 specifically in order to carry out the Gleichschaltung, or “bringing into line,” of the school with Hitler’s new party-state? Didn’t he tell the student body, in a speech that November, that “the Führer and he alone is the present and future German reality and its law”? After the war, didn’t he go out of his way to minimize Nazi crimes, even describing the Holocaust, in one notorious essay, as just another manifestation of modern technology, like mechanized agriculture? Yet by the time of his 80th birthday, in 1969, Heidegger had largely succeeded in detaching his work and reputation from his Nazism. The seal was set on his absolution by Hannah Arendt, in a birthday address broadcast on West German radio. Heidegger’s Nazism, she explained, was an “escapade,” a mistake, which happened only because the thinker naïvely “succumbed to the temptation . . . to ‘intervene’ in the world of human affairs.” The moral to be drawn from the Heidegger case was that “the thinking ‘I’ is entirely different from the self of consciousness,” so that Heidegger’s thought cannot be contaminated by the actions of the mere man. The history of Heidegger scholarship over the last 20 years has been the gradual demolition of this forgiving consensus endorsed by Arendt. . . . Read the rest here: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/09/books/review/Kirsch-t.html?pagewanted=all.