In NDPR, Jeffrey L. Kosky reviews
Jean-Luc Marion's The Reason of the Gift
Taking his lead from a 1919 lecture course by Heidegger, Marion argues that what is at stake in the question of givenness is the very definition of philosophy: Is philosophy knowledge of things or an entry into experiencing world? Is philosophy a doctrine of knowledge or is it phenomenology, which is entry into life-world? A decision about these essential questions turns, Marion following Heidegger argues, on how one understands the given and its relation to givenness; in fact, some thoughts of the given block access to givenness.