Tuesday, January 06, 2009
Continuing Reiner Schürmann on the unconcealing event.
What is called 'the event' of appropriation' here would thus be setting in with technological enframing. Technology is "the liminal appearance of the event of appropriation," [P. 32] the limen of a possible era determined solely by surface fluctuations. "Between the epochal formations of being and its transformation into the event of appropriation stands enframing." [P. 53] The most pertinent description the phenomenology of reversals can give of this turning is that it is "the entry into dwelling in the event of appropriation." [P. 53] These threshold metaphors must not hide the fact that the event of appropriation has been operative 'always already', although it emerges from the rubble of principles only with technology. Also, if principal constructs could foul its recognition, this indicates that the event of appropriation is simultaneously and event of expropriation. The very possibility of 'denial' and 'neglect' must be traced to this ultimate, although radically finite, condition of the self-structuring designated by the categories of world and of favor. Expropriation, Enteignis, accounts for the tendency toward negativity in a given economy - all and any negativity in all and any economy. It accounts for concealment (lethe) in unconcealment, which in turn accounts for withholding (epechein) in the epochs. It is the undertow in all surface fluctuations. "The event of appropriation is in itself an event of expropriation; this word takes up, in a manner commensurate with the event, the early Greek lethe, in the sense of concealment." [P. 41] The play of appropriation and expropriation conveys something aletheia cannot say. This shows once again how mistaken one would be to place Heidegger in the company of the German Romantics and to read in him a ploy for reviving experiences inspired by pre-classical Greece.

The anticipatory incidence of this transitional category 'event' as the play of appropriation and expropriation, thus reveal a 'motility'. This is opposed to the 'destiny of being' as the anticipatory incidence is to the recapitulatory incidence: "The absence of destiny from the event of appropriation does not imply that it lacks all 'motility.'" [P. 41] In Anaximander, we saw that the early Greek understanding of aletheia indicates in entities a movement of arrival from absence, lingering in presence, and withdrawal back into absence. This is no longer the way hiding-showing is thought of here. Heidegger suggests two paths toward understanding 'expropriation': the event supersedes epochal-destinal unconcealment in such a way that, firstly, "it can be retained neither as being nor as time; it is, so to speak, a neutrale tantum, the neutral 'and' in the title "Time and Being.'" [P. 43] The motility of appropriation and expropriation is secondly thematized in relation to the fourfold. These two paths are however no more than suggested. The seminar dealing with this 'motility' cuts short the discussion of the "expropriation that belongs essentially to appropriation. This includes the question: expropriation whither? The direction and sense of this question were not discussed any further." [P. 43] The event of appropriation-expropriation is the thought of the most tenuous issue for philosophy ever and therefore a tenuous thought, only yo be hinted at. It is the thought of the phenomena's simple entering, always particular and precarious, into intercourse.

Pp. 218-9
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The Fourfold

Reading the
Late Heidegger

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Andrew J. Mitchell

March 27-29, 2017
Redmond, Washington