Heidegger: Being and Time
What is the meaning of being? Martin Heidegger, one of the most influential thinkers of the 20th century, believed that this central question of ontology had been abandoned, even forgotten, by philosophy. Heidegger devoted his entire intellectual life to attempting to answer it. His earliest attempt takes the form of what he calls a “fundamental ontology.” Heidegger claims that the only access to the meaning of being in general must be through an investigation of “the meaning of the being for whom being is an issue”, that is, “the being each of us is”—the human being. Human beings, in his view, are the only beings that are concerned about their being. So fundamental ontology must take the form of an analysis of human existence, or in Heidegger’s parlance, the “ontological constitution of finite subjectivity in its finitude.”
In this class, we will survey the main components of fundamental ontology in Heidegger’s early magnum opus, Being and Time. We will consider and grapple with the core concepts of being-in-the-world; readiness-to-hand and presence-to-hand; being-with; being-towards-death; authenticity; and historicity.
Course ScheduleThursday, 6:30-9:30pm ET
June 09 — June 30, 2022