Friday, December 17, 2010
Robert Sinnerbrink on where Stiegler meets Heidegger.
According to Heidegger, the subject-object model of instrumental reason cannot think the essence of technics; that is, of modernity as an epoch of technological en-framing, the disclosure of beings (including human beings) as a totality of calculable resources (“Question Concerning Technology”). For technics, Heidegger claims, names the way that Being and beings are ontologically revealed or disclosed in modernity. Human existence [Dasein] is destinally thrown into the contingent historical clearing of Being within which, in the epoch of global technics, beings increasingly show up as nothing more than calculable resources. This technological revealing of Being, however, also opens up the possibility of an experience of what Heidegger later called das Ereignis or the “event of appropriation”: the historically singular event of mutual appropriation between human beings, beings, and Being that enables a meaningful world to open up. It is precisely this inherent ambivalence of technics – encompassing both the threat of a total reduction of beings to calculable resources, and the “saving power” of a more poetic, world-gathering mode of dwelling – that leaves open the possibility of alternative (non-totalising) forms of world-disclosure, notably through art and novel forms of cultural practice.
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