Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Violence in response to uncanniness, in Adrian Costache's paper.
For Heidegger, this path towards truth is not one easier than another seemingly more difficult, but the only one possible for in its being the Dasein itself is violent. “Man, in one word, is deinotaton, the strangest. This word encompasses the extreme limits and abrupt abysses of his being. […] Man is to deinotaton, the strangest of the strange. Here we must anticipate an explanation of the Greek word deinon and of our translation. […] On the one hand deinon means the terrible, but not in the sense of petty terrors, and above all not in the decadent, insipid, and useless sense that the word has taken today, in such locutions as "terribly cute". The deinon is the terrible in the sense of the overpowering power which compels panic fear, true fear; and in equal measure it is the collected, silent awe that vibrates with its own rhythm. […] But on the other hand deinon means the powerful in the sense of one who uses power, who not only disposes of power (Gewalt) but is violent (gewalt-tätig) insofar as the use of power is the basic trait not only of his action but also of his being-there.”

Thus, Dasein’s relationship to beings, the essent, is violent in an eminent way: “The essent as a whole, seen as power, is the overpowering, deinon in the first sense. Man is deinon, first because he remains exposed within this overpowering power, because by his essence he belongs to being. But at the same time man is deinon because he is the violent one in the sense designated above. (He gathers the power and brings it to manifestness.) Man is the violent one, not aside from or along with other attributes but solely in the sense that in his fundamental violence (Gewalt-tätigkeit) he uses power (Gewalt) against the overpowering (Über-wältigende). Because he is twice deinon in a sense that is originally one, he is to deinotaton, the most powerful: violent in the midst of the overpowering.”
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