Monday, May 31, 2010
Kissler, Alexander. "Chalk and the Abyss." SIGN AND SIGHT May 19, 2010.
The bitter word stands in the room. It casts huge shadows over his work. Was Martin Heidegger a "Nazi philosopher"? Did Heidegger, as his student the philosopher Ernesto Grassi emphasised in 1988, derive "justification from his theoretical principles for an anti-Semitic and National Socialist position"? The case against the dark thinker is made with recourse to passages from his Being and Time as well as an assortment of statements, letters and reports and, above all, the Freiburg rectoral address and a seminar from the winter semester of 1933/34. This seminar was declared to contain decisive evidence for "the total identification of Heidegger's teachings with the principles of Hitlerism". This was how Emmanuel Faye expressed it in his book Heidegger: the Introduction of Nazism into Philosophy, which was published last year in English and German translations. Faye was building on the 1987 book Heidegger and Nazism by the Chilean historian Victor Farias, who turned 70 last week. Until now you could either believe Emmanuel Faye's theories or not; the seminar in question was completely inaccessible. The Heidegger Jahrbuch (Heidegger yearbook) closes this gap. For the first time you can read and judge for yourself. . . . Read the rest here: http://www.signandsight.com/features/2029.html.