Loyola University Chicago

Department of Philosophy

PHIL 432: Heidegger

PHIL 432:  Heidegger

The General Catalog Description

Prepares students for advanced work on the thought of Heidegger.

PHIL 432:  Heidegger

Adriaan T. Peperzak

Somewhat comparable to Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason (1781), Martin Heidegger’s Being and Time (1927) inaugurated a new epoch in Western philosophy. Whatever moral, political, scientific, or philosophical appreciation of Heidegger’s personal and academic history you have come to trust, no one can deny that after the philosophies of Kant and Hegel, Heidegger’s oeuvre has been one of the most discussed and influential of the last 86 years.

A serious study and evaluation of at least some of his texts are necessary conditions for discovering what coming philosophers may or should learn from Heidegger’s adventurous explorations. Instead of presenting his doctrine or system (which does not exist), we will study some of his most important essays – for which his own expression Wegmarken (Pathmarks or Stations on the Way) seems to be a good name. Since these essays are quite dense and difficult, close and repeated readings are necessary to understand and absorb their message. The success of the seminar depends therefore on extensive and – especially on – very intensive and meditative preparations of each meeting.

Some of the student evaluations I received after former semesters complained that my classes did not organize enough discussion. It is certainly not true that I did not allow, welcome, or regularly invite discussion, but (1) between reading and discussion we often will need a question period, and (2) I can stimulate but I cannot force my students to begin a discussion, if they do not want or dare or like to do so.