Tuesday, March 03, 2020
In NDPR, Filippo Casati reviews David Egan's The Pursuit of an Authentic Philosophy: Wittgenstein, Heidegger, and the Everyday.
By reading Heidegger, we learn that we have a natural tendency of falling and disappearing in das Man. Exactly this unthinking absorption in how one does things makes us inauthentic. Egan finds a similar worry in Wittgenstein's concerns about our unreflective practices of explanations. Having said that, Heidegger and Wittgenstein do not simply warn us about the danger of inauthentic existence; they also suggest how to evade it, and they do so by appealing to all those situations in which the ordinary appears in all its uncanniness. While Heidegger argues that, through anxiety, we face the groundlessness of our everyday, Wittgenstein believes that the same kind of uncanniness can be met in dealing with scepticism. While, according to Heidegger, anxiety makes the familiar and meaningful context of ready-to-hand entities vanish, Wittgenstein questions the very possibility of having a final explanation which could lead to any sort of solid understanding.
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