Friday, March 23, 2018
MH is on the cover of Philosophy Now. Andrew Royle explains.
The formidable task that Heidegger sets himself in Being and Time is to respond to the question ‘What is Being’? This ‘Question of Being’ has a long heritage in the Western philosophical tradition, but for Heidegger, to merely ask what is Being? is problematic, as that emphasis tends to objectify Being as a ‘thing’ – that is to say, it separates off ‘Being’ (whatever it is) from the questioner of Being. This for Heidegger is making unhelpful assumptions of the nature of Being even before interrogating what Being actually is. Therefore, rather than asking ‘What is Being?’, Heidegger begins with the question ‘Whom is asking the question of Being?’ This question – the whom of Being – includes the possibility that the questioners themselves may actually contribute in some way to the Being under question. Heidegger’s starting point thus asks whom is this Being “that in its Being is concerned about its very Being.”
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