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Heidegger’s Quest for the Essence of Man

  • Tze-Wan Kwan
Part of the Analecta Husserliana book series (ANHU, volume 17)

Abstract

In his lecture given in Berlin in 1931 Husserl clarified and defended his idea of phenomenology against a contemporary trend which he characterized as philosophical anthropology.1 Although he did not mention the name of those in question, Husserl’s attack was obviously directed at Scheler and above all at Heidegger. In that lecture, Husserl categorized Heidegger’s approach to phenomenology as an “anthropologistic” or “psychologists” one, which makes its stand exclusively on human Dasein. Husserl on the contrary, described his own approach as “transcendental” and based solely upon the rigorous science of transcendental subjectivity. However, before entering a major demarcation between his own idea of phenomenology and that of Heidegger, Husserl made allowance for a mutual ground upon which his and Heidegger’s work might rest. Husserl proposed that both anthropologistic and transcendental approaches represented in one way or another the “subjectivistic tendency” which has become characteristic of modern European philosophy. In other words, Husserl conceived Heidegger’s phenomenological program as a new formulation of the theory of subjectivity. Husserl disagreed with Heidegger because he thought Heidegger had deviated too far from the original program of constitutive phenomenology, which should provide philosophy with a firm foundation. According to Husserl, Heidegger’s faults lie in his inability to understand the full scope of the theory of constitution2 and in his resorting to naive ontological and phenomenologically (constitutively) unclarified concepts.3

Keywords

Relational Center Modern Philosophy Hermeneutic Circle Philosophical Anthropology Subjectivistic Tradition 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.
    Nietzsche II, p.419; English Translation from The End of Philosophy, trans, trans. Jian Stambaugh, p.18Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Holzwege (Frankfurt: Klostermann, 1972), pp. 81 ff.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Wegmarken (Frankfurt: Kostermann, 1976), p. 246; see also Die Frage nach dem Ding ( Tubingen: Niemeyer, 1962 ), p. 35.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Holzwege, p. 98; see also Vier Seminare ( Frankfurt: Klostermann, 1977 ), p. 120.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Zur Seinsfrage (Frankfurt: Klosterman, 1956), pp. 18–19.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    See Heidegger’s Schellings Abhandlung Uber das Wesen der menschlichen Freiheit (1809) (Tubingen: Niemeyer, 1971), pp. 39–42.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    NietzscheII, p. 419; English translation from The End of Philosophy, trans. Joan Stambaugh, p. 18.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Grundbegriffe (Frankfurt: Klostermann, 1981), p. 90. Or as Fink puts it: “Deification of man” (“Vergottung des Menschen”); see Fink, “Welt und Geschichte,” in Husserl et la Penste moderne ( The Hague: Nijhoff, 1959 ). p. 155.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Werner Veauthier, ‘Analogie des Seins und ontologische Differenz,’ Jahrbuch für Philosophie 5 (1955): 10.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Otto Pöggeler, ‘Sein als Ereignis,’ Zeitschrift fur philosophische Forschung 13 (1959): 621.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Kants These Uber das Sein (Frankfurt: Klostermann, 1963), p. 36.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    See G. W. F. Hegel, Vorlesungen uber die Geschichte der Philosophie (Frankfurt: Suhrkamp, 1971), pp. 289 f.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    See Einfuhrung in die Metaphysik, p.106; English translation by Ralph Manheim (with modification), in An Introduction to Metaphysik ( New York: Doubleday, 1959 ), p. 117Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    See Heidegger’s Heraklit (Frankfurt: Klostermann, 1979), pp. 206–214; see also Kant und das Problem der Metaphysik, p. 263Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    ‘Brief über den Humanismus,’ in Platons Lehre von der Wahrheit, mit einem Brief tiber den Humanismus (Bern: Francke, 1975), p. 90; see also Die Technik und die Kehre ( Pfullingen: Neske, 1962 ), p. 41.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Brief Uber den Humanismus, 75, English translation by David Farell Krell, in Basic Writings ( New York, Harper, 1977 ), p. 210.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Walter Schulz, Philosophie in der verUnder ten Welt ( Pfullingen: Neske, 1972 ), p. 275.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Gelassenheit (Pfullingen: Neske, 959), pp. 25-26, English translation by J. M. Anderson and E. H. Freund, in Discourse on Thinking ( New York: Harper, 1966 ), pp. 54–55.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© D. Reidel Publishing Company 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tze-Wan Kwan
    • 1
  1. 1.Tung-hai UniversityTaichungTaiwan

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