Martin Heidegger

Copyright Michael D. Robbins 2005


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Martin Heidegger—German Existentialist Philosopher

September 26, 1889, 11:30 AM, Messkirch, Germany. (Source: birth record) Died, died on 5/26/1976, Freiburg, Germany.

(Ascendant, Sagittarius; MC, Virgo with Mars also in Virgo; Sun in Libra closely conjunct Ceres also in Libra; there is a multiple conjunction in Libra with Moon and Uranus closely conjunct also conjunct Juno, with Juno, itself, conjuncted to Mercury—all being conjuncted by translation of light; Venus in Leo closely conjuncted to Saturn in Leo; Jupiter in Capricorn conjunct the SN; Neptune and Pluto conjuncted in Gemini, both closely conjuncted the seventh house cusp)


Every man is born as many men and dies as a single one.

Man acts as though he were the shaper and master of language, while in fact language remains the master of man.

Quotes from others ABOUT Heidegger

The speaking of language is an event (Ereignis) that Heidegger calls the worlding of the world. This is no longer understood as a process of world-making over which the poet presides. It is rather a movement of the concealment and disclosure of things into which poetry lets itself go.
Babette E. Babich

To read Heidegger is not to read a philosophy of Nazism or anything else but it is to read philosophically. What we have to learn from Heidegger in the phenomenological tradition after Husserl is a dedication to thinking. To prepare for thinking in this way is no matter of mere reading but a task to be undertaken, a doing which must, as it is thought, undertake, or as Nietzsche taught in another sense, overtake us.

For Heidegger’s developing philosophy the questions of being, consciousness and history are significant in that they each resist the tendencies of formalism, empiricism and relativism, which increasingly characterize modern science and philosophy throughout the 20th century. Already by 1913, then, Heidegger’s philosophical interests reveal a highly developed pattern according to which he seizes on a basic problem of metaphysics, concerning the fundamental conditions of, for instance, knowledge, action, judgment, consciousness, language or history. The problem each time indicates a contradiction between a metaphysical question of grounds and a contemporary academic discourse. Heidegger never simply adopts the metaphysical side against the empiricist or formalist doctrines but rather he consistently establishes what the basic problems of metaphysics are, acknowledging and demonstrating the persistent and repeated failure throughout its history to achieve its aims.

So Heidegger’s earliest works reveal a pattern of thought that is not strictly reducible to his early discoveries of powerful precursors. He shows a consistent interest in the covert connections between some basic problems: the increasing dominance of doctrines that favor empirical, formal or relativistic methods and conclusions; the failure of powerful metaphysical doctrines that, while allowing the criticism of empirical and formal methods, nonetheless fail to establish unquestionable grounds themselves; and already, as evident in the earliest published work, a deep interest in the implications of this connection for the social and political concerns of the modern world. The key problem concerns the relationship between the persistent failure of metaphysics and the dominance of empirical and formalist thinking in the sciences and technology, a thinking which, despite its dominance, remains vulnerable to criticism from a philosophical perspective inherited from the metaphysical tradition. It is the relationship between this key problem and his interest in contemporary and, at this time, local political and social issues that would develop into the controversial question of Heidegger’s politics.


Martin Heidegger

Heidegger, Martin (1889-1976), German philosopher, who developed existential phenomenology and has been widely regarded as the most original 20th-century philosopher. Heidegger was born in Messkirch, Baden, on September 22, 1889. He studied Roman Catholic theology and then philosophy at the University of Freiburg, where he was a student of Edmund Husserl, the founder of phenomenology. Heidegger began teaching at Freiburg in 1915. After teaching (1923-28) at Marburg, he became a professor of philosophy at Freiburg in 1928. He died in Messkirch on May 26, 1976.

Being and Time

Besides Husserl, Heidegger was especially influenced by pre-Socratics, by the Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard, and by the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. In his most important and influential work, Being and Time (1927; trans. 1962), Heidegger was concerned with what he considered the essential philosophical (and human) question: What is it, to be? This led to the question of what kind of “being” human beings have. They are, he said, thrown into a world that they have not made but that consists of potentially useful things, including cultural as well as natural objects. Because these objects and artifacts come to humanity from the past and are used in the present for the sake of future goals, Heidegger posited a fundamental relation between the mode of being of objects and of humanity and the structure of time. The individual is, however, always in danger of being submerged in the world of objects, everyday routine, and the conventional, shallow behavior of the crowd. The feeling of dread (Angst) brings the individual to a confrontation with death and the ultimate meaninglessness of life, but only in this confrontation can an authentic sense of Being and of freedom be attained.

Later Work

After 1930, Heidegger turned, in such works as An Introduction to Metaphysics (1953; trans. 1959), to the interpretation of particular Western conceptions of Being. He felt that in contrast to the reverent ancient Greek conception of Being, modern technological society has fostered a purely manipulative attitude that has deprived Being and human life of meaning, a condition he called nihilism. Humanity has forgotten its true vocation, which is to recover the deeper understanding of Being that was achieved by the early Greeks and lost by subsequent philosophers.


Heidegger's original treatment of such themes as human finitude, death, nothingness, and authenticity led many observers to associate him with existentialism, and his work had a crucial influence on the French existentialist Jean Paul Sartre. Heidegger, however, eventually repudiated existentialist interpretations of his work. Since the 1960s his influence has spread beyond continental Europe and has had an increasing impact on philosophy in English-speaking countries.

Heidegger Chronology

* 1889 Born to sexton Friedrich and Johanna Heidegger (née Kempf) in Messkirch, Baden, September 26.
* 1892 Sister Marie born.
* 1894 Brother Fritz born.
* 1903 Konradihaus, Jesuit gymnasium in Constance.
* 1906 Transfers to Bertholds gymnasium in Freiburg and boards at the archiepiscopal seminary of St. Georg.
* 1907 Receives a copy of Franz Brentano's "On the Manifold Meaning of Being according to Aristotle" (1862) from Dr. Conrad Gröber, a paternal friend.
* 1909 Receives baccalaureate, July 13. Entered novitate of the Society of Jesus at Tisis near Feldkirch in Austria, September 30. Leaves at end of two week candidature, October 13; possibly turned down for health reasons. Began studying for the priesthood at the Albert-Ludwig University in Freiburg, winter semester. Borrows Husserl's Logical Investigations from library. Begins reading Dilthey. First lecture, on Abraham a Santa Clara, in Hausen im Tal (c 15 KM from Messkirch).
* 1910 Lecture, on Abraham a Santa Clara (GA13), in Kreenheinstetten, Abraham's birthplace (c 10 KM from Messkirch), August 15. Begins publishing articles in Der Akademiker, the journal of the German Association of Catholic Graduates; first Per Mortem ad vitam then a reviews of Autorität und Freiheit and Versiegelte Lippen. Poem: Sterbende Pracht (GA13).
* 1911 Goes home to rest in February, returns to school in April. Spends summer semester at home because of asthma and heart problems. Abandons theological seminary on advice of his superiors. Changes studies to mathematics and philosophy. Review of Das Gottesbedürfnis. Der Akademiker: Zur philosophischen Orientierung für Akademiker, and reviews of Das Reisebuch and Gottesbedürfnis. Poems: Auf stillen Pfaden, Julinacht, Ölbergstunden (GA13), and Wir wollen warten (GA13).
* 1912 Publishes last articles in Der Akademiker, Relisionpsychologie und Unterbewußtsein and review of Elementa Philosophiae Aristotelico-Thomisticae. Writes Das Realitätsproblem in der modernen Philosophie (GA1) for Philosophisches Jahrbuch der Görresgesellschaft, and Neue Forschungen für Logik (GA1) for Literarische Rundschau für das katholische Deutschland.
* 1913 Doctoral examination under Schneider with Heinrich Rickert (1863-1936) co-examining, July 26. Dissertation: Die Lehre vom Urteil im Psychologismus. Ein kritischpositiver Beitrag zur Logik; "The Doctrine of Judgement in Psychologism". Awarded Ph.D. summa cum laude. Publishes reviews of Kants Briefe in Auswahl and Zeitlichkeit und Zeitlosigkeit in Literarische Rundschau für das katholische Deutschland, and Bibliothek wertvoller Novellen und Erzählungen in Der Akademiker.
* 1914 Publishes reviews of Von der Klassifikation der psychischen Phänomene (GA1), Kant und Aristoteles (GA1) and Kant-Laienbrevier (GA1) in Literarische Rundschau für das katholische Deutschland. Volunteers for Infantry Reserve Battalion 113. Serves August 2-10; released for health reasons. Then drafted in same battalion. Serves October 9-20; then again released for health reasons.
* 1915 Habilitation. Dissertation: "The Doctrine of Categories and Signification in Duns Scotus". Philosophical Faculty at Freiburg approves, and the Grand Duchy of Baden grants, July 31, a license to teach philosophy; he's a Privatdozent. Drafted again August 18. September trained in Berlin with Reserve Battalion 142. Again released for health reasons. Recuperates in hospital for a few weeks. October 16 sent back to Freiburg to work as a military censor at the post office. Assists Father Engelbert Krebs (1881-1950) lecturing theology students in philosophy. Course Die Grundlinien der antiken und scholastischen Philosophie, and Über Kant, Prolegomena seminar, winter semester. Attending the first course is Elfride Petri (1893-1992), a student of political economy. Works with Edith Stein editing Husserl's papers for publication.
* 1916 Meets Edmond Husserl (1859-1938) in the spring. Husserl sends postcard to Heidegger asking to see his Habilitationsschrift, May 27. Course Der deutsche Idealismus, and Übungen über Texte aus den logischen Schriften des Aristoteles seminar, summer semester. Course Grundfragen der Logik, winter semester. Edith Stein becomes Husserl's personal assistant, October. It is not known if Heidegger actually taught the courses announced in 1915-1916.
* 1917 Married to Elfride Petri by Father Krebs, March 21. A week later remarried in a protestant ceremony with her parents. Talk on Friedrich Schleiermacher, August 2. Taught courses on Hegel summer semester, and Plato winter semester.
* 1918 Drafted again January 1. Private Heidegger of the territorial reserve reported to barracks, January 17. Basic training at Camp Heuberg, approximately 25 km north of Messkirch until May 15. May 15-July 20 served at meteorological station in Berlin-Charlotty. Taught course on "Lotze and the Development of Modern Logic", summer semester. Meets Elisabeth Blochmann. Spends between late August through mid-November with meteorological unit, Front Weather Watch, in the Marne. Promoted to lance corporal, November 5. Discharged, November 16. Arrives home in December.
* 1919 Son Jörg born, January 1. Wrote to Engelbert Krebs, breaking with "the dogmatic system of Catholicism", January 9. Die Idee der Philosophie und das Weltanschauungsproblem (GA56/57), Kriegsnotsemester (War Emergency Semester), February 7 to April 11. April 8th meets Karl Jaspers (1883-1969) in Freiburg. Becomes Edmond Husserl's unsalaried lecturer and assistant at Freiburg. Courses Phänomenologie und transzendentale Wertphilosophie (GA56/57) and Über das Wesen der Universität und des akademischen Studiums (GA56/57), and Einführung in die Phänomenologie im Anschluß an Descartes, Meditationes seminar, summer semester. Course Grundprobleme der Phänomenologie (GA58), and Übungen im Anschluß an Natorp, Allgemeine Psychologie seminar, winter semester.
* 1920 Course Phänomenologie der Anschauung und des Ausdrucks. Theorie der philosophischen Begriffsbildung (GA59), and Kolloquium im Anschluß an die Vorlesung seminar, summer semester. Karl Jaspers meets Heidegger in April. Son Hermann born, August 20. Course Einleitung in die Phänomenologie der Religion (GA60), and Phänomenologie Übungen für Anfänger im Anschluß an Descartes, Meditationes seminar, winter semester.
* 1921 Course Augustinus und der Neuplatonismus (GA60), and Phänomenologie Übungen für Anfänger im Anschluß an Aristoteles, de anima seminar, summer semester. Anmerkungen zu Karl Jaspers "Psychologie der Weltanschauungen" sent to Jaspers, June. Phänomenologische Interpretationen zu Aristoteles (GA61), and Phänomenologie Übungen für Anfänger im Anschluß an Husserl, Logische Untersuchugen II seminar, winter semester.
* 1922 Elfride has hut built in Todtnauberg, as a present. Writes to Husserl, April 14. Course Phänomenologische Interpretationen ausgewählter Abhandlungen des Aristoteles zur Ontologie und Logik (GA62), and Phänomenologie Übungen für Anfänger im Anschluß an Husserl, Logische Untersuchugen II, 2 seminar, summer semester. Course Übungen über: Phänomenologische Interpretationen zu Aristoteles, and Phänomenologie Übungen für Anfänger im Anschluß an Husserl, Ideen I seminar, winter semester. Visits Jaspers in Heidelberg for a week. Writes introduction for book on Aristole. Jacob Klein and Leo Strauss attend Heidegger's lectures.
* 1923 Course Ontologie. Hermeneutik der Faktizität (GA63), summer semester. Became associate at the University of Marburg with help of Paul Natrop. Meets Gadamer. Meets Rudolf Bultmann. Einführung in die phänomenologische Forschung (GA17), also known as Der Beginn der neuzeitlichen Philosophie, winter semester. Aufgaben und Wege der phänomenologischen Forschung, lecture to Hamburg group of Kant Society, December 7.
* 1924 Hannah Arendt (1906-1975) enrolls in Marburg, meets Heidegger. They become lovers, February. Grundbegriffe der aristotelischen Philosophie (GA18), summer semester. Ber Begriff der Zeit, talk to Marburg Theologians, July 25. Platon: Sophistes (GA19), winter semester. Dasein und Wahrsein nach Aristoteles, lecture to groups in Elberfeld-Barmen, Cologne and Dortmund, December 1-8. Heidegger's father dies (73). First substantial commentary on Heidegger, Tanabe Hajime's essay "A New Turn in Phenomenology: Heidegger's Phenomenology of Life", published in Japan.
* 1925 Hannah Arendt leaves Marburg for Heidelberg. Wilhelm Diltheys Forschungsarbeit und der gegenwärtige Kampf um eine historische Weltanschauung, ten lectures in Kassel at the Society for Art and Science of the Electorate of Hesse, April 16-21. Prolegomena zur Geschichte des Zeitbegriffs (GA20), summer semester. Marburg faculty propose Heidegger to replace Nicolai Hartmann in the philosophy chair, August 5. Rejected by Berlin for lack of literary works. Logik. Die Frage nach der Wahrheit (GA21), winter semester.
* 1926 Heidegger presents Sein und Zeit (GA2) manuscript to Husserl at his 67th birthday party in Todtnauberg, April 8. Heidegger lectures in Switzerland. Grundbegriffe der antiken Philosophie (GA22), summer semester. Vom Wesen der Wahrheit, lecture to Academic Union at Marburg, May 24. Faculty proposes Heidegger for philosophy chair again, June 18. Rejected by Berlin again. Geschichte der Philosophie von Thomas v. Aquin bis Kant (GA23), winter semester. Begriff und Entwicklung der phänomenologischen Forschung, lecture at Marburg Cultural Science Circle, December 4.
* 1927 Phänomenologie und Theologie, lecture at the Evangelical Theologians' Society in Tübingen, March 9. Sein und Zeit published in Jahrbuch für Philosophie und phänomenologische Forschung, vol. 8, April. Die Grundprobleme der Phänomenologie (GA24), summer semester. Heidegger's mother dies (69) May 3. Meets Count Kuki Shuzo at Husserl's home. Phänomenologische Interpretation von Kant Kritik der reinen Vernunft (GA25), winter semester. Heidegger promoted to full professor, October 19. Writes to Husserl, October 22.
* 1928 Phänomenologie und Theologie, lecture in Marburg, February 14. Vorbemerkungen des Herausgebers published. Metaphysische Anfangsgründe der Logik im Ausgang von Leibniz (GA26) (source for 'Aus der letzten Marburger Vorlesung' in Wegmarken), summer semester. Seminar on Phänomenologie Übungen zu Aristoteles, Physica III. Lectures on Kant and Metaphysics in Riga, September. Appointed professor of philosophy at Freiburg. Einleitung in die Philosophie (GA27), winter semester. Aus der letzten Marburger Vorlesung written. Herbert Marcuse begins attending Heidegger's lectures; continues until 1932.
* 1929 Philosophische Anthropologie und Metaphysik des Daseins, lecture to the Kant Society of Frankfurt, January 24. Kants Kritik der reinen Vernunft und die Aufgabe einer Grundlegung der Metaphysik, lectures March 17-27, at Davos Institute for university teachers. Speech to Edmund Husserl on his 70th birthday, Freiburg, April 8. Edith Stein visits Husserl and Heidegger, April. Vom Wesen des Grundes, contribution to Edmund Husserl Festschrift, which he edited. Kant und das Problem der Metaphysik (GA3) published. Was ist Metaphysik?, inaugural lecture to the Freiburg University faculties, July 24, in the University Auditorium. Der Deutsche Idealismus (Fichte, Hegel, Schelling) und die philosophische Problemlage der Gegenwart (GA28), summer semester. Die Grundbegriffe der Metaphysik Welt-Endlichkeit-Einsamkeit (GA29/G30), winter semester. Die heutige Problemlage der Philosophie, lecture in Karlsruhe, December. Was ist Metaphysik? published. Count Kuki Shuzo introduces Heidegger's work to Jean-Paul Sartre, his French tutor in Paris. Heidegger denounces Jewish influence on Germany in grant application, October 2.
* 1930 Lectures at the Scientific Union in Amsterdam, Die heutige Problemlage der Philosophie, March 21, and Hegel und das Problem der Metaphysik, March 22. Tea at Husserl's home, June 22. Gives talk, Vom Wesen der Wahrheit, at Baden celebration, July 11-14. Vom Wesen der menschlichen Freiheit. Einleitung in die Philosophie (GA31), summer semester. Declines Philosophy chair in Berlin. Vom Wesen der Wahrheit, lecture in Karlsruhe, July 14, then at Philosophical Society of Bremen, October 8, and in Freiburg, December 11. Augustinus: Quid est tempus?, lecture at monastery of Beuron, 15 km from Messkirch, October 26. Hegel Phänomenologie des Geites (GA32), winter semester.
* 1931 Aristoteles: Metaphysik IX (GA33), summer semester. Vom Wesen der Wahrheit: Zu Platons Höhlengleichnis und Theatet (GA34), winter semester. Vom Wesen der Wahrheit read to the monks in the Abbey of Beuron, fall.
* 1932 Der Anfang der abendländischen Philosophie (Anaximander und Parmenides) (GA35), summer semester. Vom Wesen der Wahrheit lecture, in Dresden, summer.
* 1933 At fiftieth anniversary of Husserl doctorate at Husserl's home, January 23. Ernst Krieck invites Heidegger to join the KADH (Kuturpolitische Arbeitsgemeinschaft Deutscher Hochschullehrer), March. Heidegger describes attending KADH meeting in Frankfurt in letter to Blochmann, March 30. Elected April 21, becomes rector of the University of Freiburg, April 22. Writes to Krieck, April 22. Edmund Husserl forced to retire for racial reasons, April. Writes to Husserl, April 29. Joins National Socialist Party, May 3. Sends telegram to Hitler asking him to postpone meeting with Association of German Universities, May 20. Rectorship address Die Selbstbehauptung der deutschen Universität, May 27. Attends meeting of the Congress of Rectors in Berlin, June 8. Writes postcard to Blochmann from Berlin, June 10. Denounces "dangerous international alliance of Jews" at Jaspers' home, June 30. Attends (with Alfred Baeumler and Joachim Haupt) two-day conference in Berlin sponsored by the Deutsche Studentenschaft, July 10-11 {Ott and Farias have incorrect date}. Writes to ministry of education supporting anti-semitism, July 12. Writes to Blochmann anticipating meeting of rectors in Homburg, August 19. Hannah Arendt departs Germany, August. Writes letters of recommendation for Karl Löwith and Elisabeth Blochmann. First book-length study of Heidegger, Count Kuki Shuzo's "The Philosophy of Heidegger", published in Japan. Receives call to Berlin from Bernhard Rust, September 4. Receives call to Munich from Hans Schemm, September 5. Writes to Minister of Education, September 6. Krieck and Erich Jaensch write to Rust denouncing Heidegger, September. Tips off authorities that Chemistry professor Hermann Staudinger (Nobel Prize 1953) was a pacifist, September 1929. Expresses support for Hitler at public meeting in Leipzig, November. Vom Wesen der Wahrheit (GA36/37), winter semester.
* Todtnauberg camp, October 4-10. Rejects chair of philosophy in Munich, and Berlin again. Secretly denounces Göttingen philosophy professor Eduard Baumgarten, December 16. 1934 Krieck and Jaensch again write letters denouncing Heidegger, February. Writes Der Ruf zum Arbeitsdienst and Mahnwort an das allemanische Volk. Resigns rectorship, April 23, letter accepted by Baden's minister for education the 27th. Krieck attacks repeatedly Heidegger in his journal Volk im Werden, starting in April. Uber Logik als Frage nach der Sprache (GA38), summer semester. Writes Zur Überwindung der Ästhetik Zu 'Ursprung des Kunstwerkes'. Lecture in Konstanz: Die gegenwärtige Lage und die künftige Aufgabe der deutschen Philosophie. Hölderlins Hymnen <<Germanien>> und <<Der Rhein>> (GA39), winter semester.
* 1935 Einführung in die Metaphysik (GA40), summer semester. Der Ursprung der Kunstwerkes, public lecture to the Kunstwissenschaftliche Gesellschaft in Freiburg, November 13. Die Frage nach dem Ding. Zu Kant Lehre von den transzendentalen Grundsätzen (GA41), winter semester.
* 1936 Der Ursprung der Kunstwerkes, public lecture at university in Zurich, January 20, and also at the Freies Deutsches Hochstift in Frankfurt, November 17 and 24 and December 4. Schelling: Vom Wesen der menschlichen Freiheit (1809) (GA42), summer semester. Hölderlin und das Wesen der Dichtung, lecture at Italian-German Culture Institute in Rome, April 2, and "Europe and German philosophy", April 8. Meets Löwith in Rome. Nietzsche: Der Wille zur Macht als Kunst (GA43), winter semester. Karl Rahner begins attending Heidegger's courses for two years. Stops corresponding with Jaspers.
* 1937 Nietzsches metaphysische Grundstellung im abendländischen Denken: Die ewige Wiederkehr des Gleichen (GA44), summer semester. Grundfragen der Philosophie. Ausgewählte <<Probleme>> der <<Logik>> (GA45), winter semester.
* 1938 Die Begründung des neuzeitlichen Weltbildes durch die Metaphysik, "The Establishing by Metaphysics of the Modern World Picture", lecture, June 9. Nietzsches II. Unzeitgemässe Betrachtung (GA46), winter semester. Zeit des Weltbildes written. Completes Beiträge zur Philosophie (Vom Ereignis) (GA65).
* 1939 Nietzsches Lehre vom Willen zur Macht als Erkenntnis (GA47), summer semester. Wie wenn am Feiertage written. Vom Wesen und Begriff der "Physis", Aristoteles Physik B 1 written. Seminar on Herder's On the Origin of Language, summer semester. Hölderlins Hymne 'Wie wenn am Feiertage', lecture repeated several times.
* 1940 Nietzsche: Der europäische Nihilismus (GA48), second trimester. Platons Lehre von der Wahrheit, lecture written.
* 1941 Schelling (GA49), first trimester. Grundbegriffe (GA51), summer semester. Hölderlins Hymne <<Andenken>> (GA52), winter semester.
* 1942 Hölderlins Hymne <<Der Ister>> (GA53), summer semester. Parmenides (GA54), winter semester. Vom Wesen der Wahrheit published by Ernesto Grassi.
* 1943 Heraklit (GA55), summer semester. Heimkunft/An die Verwandten, speech at University of Freiburg commemorating 100th anniversary of Hölderlin's death, June 6. Aletheia lecture. Vom Wesen der Wahrheit published. Hegels Begriff der Erfahrung, and Andenken (for Memorial Volume on occasion of the centenary of Hölderlin's death) written. Nietzsches Wort 'Gott ist tot', lecture. Postscript added to new addition of Was ist Metaphysik?
* 1944 Logik. Heraklits Lehre vom Logos (GA55), summer semester. Erläuterungen zu Hölderlins Dichtung, containing Heimkunft: An die Verwandten and Hölderlins und das Wesen der Dichtung, published. Zur Erörterung der Gelasseinheit written. Drafted into Volkssturm (People's Militia), November 8. In December flees to Messkirch following bombing of Freiburg, November 27. Freiburg philosophical faculty moves to Schloss (Castle) Wildenstein in upper Danube valley, 10 km. from Messkirch, December.
* 1945 Allies bomb Messkirch, February 22. French occupy valley, April 21. Lectures on Hölderlin in Hausen, June 24. Returns to Freiburg. Denazification hearings start July 23. Barred from teaching by French Military Government as preliminary step in investigations, October 5. Jaspers writes report on Heidegger's involvement with Nazis. Freiburg Faculty of Philosophy first debates Heidegger's case, December 1; presents Heidegger with 23 questions. Jaspers writes to de-Nazification committee criticizing Heidegger, December 22.
* 1946 Nervous breakdown. Taken by Beringer, dean of the medical school, to Gebsattel, Badenweiler, for three weeks. Then returns to Todnauberg. Meets Stefan Schimanski of the Manchester Guardian, June. Informed of French Military Government's decision to bar him from teaching, March 11. Heidegger applies for Emeritus status, declaring he will refrain from teaching. Senate grants Heidegger Emeritus status, without permission to teach, and orders him to keep a low profile. Regional government and denazification comissions rule that the university refuse Heidegger Emeritus status and pension him off. Ernesto Castelli visits Todtnauberg, June 9. Spruch des Anaximander written. Wozu Dichter, lecture given to commemorate 20th anniversary of Rilke's death (December 29, 1926). Works on translating Lao-Tzu into German. Brief über den Humanismus sent as letter to Jean Beaufret, November 10. University strips Heidegger of professorship, December 28.
* 1947 Brief über den Humanismus published. Medard Boss writes to Heidegger for first time. Herbert Marcuse writes to Heidegger asking him to recant Nazi past, August 28. Second meeeting with Stefan Schimanski, October. Jean Beaufret visits Todtnauberg, December. University stops paying Heidegger at end of year.
* 1948 Heidegger letter responding to Marcuse, January 20. Der Feldweg written.
* 1949 Die Gefahr and Das Gestell lecture in Bremen, January 12. Gadamer edits Festschrift for Heidegger's sixtieth birthday. Wilhelm Szilasi, publishes another Festschrift, Martin Heidegger's influence on the sciences, Bern. French military government issues final report on Heidegger, July. Prohibition against teaching lifted, Spetember. University senate votes to make Heidegger emeritus professor. Einblick in Das, Was Ist (Das Ding, Das Gestell, Die Gefahr, and Die Kehre), "Insight into That Which Is", lectures to the Bremen Club, December 1-4. Medard Boss visits Todtnauberg for first time. Heidegger lectures at Bühlerhöhe. Introduction added to new addition of Was ist Metaphysik?, and postscript revised.
* 1950 Einblick in Das, Was Ist (GA79) lectures repeated in March at Bühlerhöhe. "Who is Zarathustra" and "The principle of sufficient reason", lectures to Bremen Club, March 25/26. Lecture to Munich academy, expansion of first part of Einblick. Das Ding, lecture to the Bavarian Academy of Fine Arts, June 6. Das Ding lecture, Icking, June 10, and writes Der Tod and Die Flur poems. Reinstated to teaching position winter semester. Die Sprache, lecture at Bühlerhöhe, October 7. Arendt visits and resumes friendship.
* 1951 Die Sprache, lecture at Stuttgart, February 14. Logos, lecture to Bremen Club, May 4. Bauen Wohnen Denken, lecture to Darmstadt Symposium on Man and Space. Made professor Emeritus by Baden government. Meets Frau Rilke, May. ...dichterisch wohnet der Mensch..., lecture at Bühlerhöhe, October 6. Logos written. Was heisst Denken?,part I (GA8), winter semester. Zu einem Vers von Mörike. Ein Briefwechsel mit Martin Heidegger von Emil Staiger published.
* 1952 Was heisst Denken?, part II (GA8), summer semester. Reads the final lecture after semester ends, at a "Colloquium on Dialectic" in Muggenbrunn, September 15. Moira written. Jean-Paul Sartre visits Freiburg, December. Arendt visits again.
* 1953 Visits Icking, April. Wer ist Neitzsches Zarathustra, lecture to the Bremen Club, May 8. Wissenschaft und Besinnung, lecture in Schauinsland, May 15, and Munich, August 4. Die Frage nach der Technik, lecture to the Munich Academy, November 18. Die Sprache im Gedicht, and Aus einem Gespräch von der Sprache written. Der Feldweg published. Meets Walter Kaufmann. Meets D. T. Suzuki.
* 1954 Die Frage nach der Technik, lecture in Freiburg, February 12, 150th anniversary of Kant's death. Tezuka Tomio visits, March. Besinnung, lecture in Zurich, Constance, and Freiburg, June 19. Wissenschaft und Besinnung, lecture, August. Was heisst Denken?, Aus der Erfahrung des Denkens, and Vorträge und Aufsätze published.
* 1955 Visited Paris and Normandy with Jean Beaufret in August. Qu'est-ce que la Philosophie?, Was ist das-die Philosophie?, presented in Cérisy-la-Salle, August. Also visits Paris and Georges Braque in Varengeville. Gelassenheit (GA16), speech in Messkirch, October 30, for the 175th birthday of Conradin Kreutzer. Die Frage nach der Technik, lecture to the Bavarian Academy of Fine Arts, November 18. Der Satz vom Grund, part I, winter semester. Wrote Über "Die Linie" (later published as Zur Seinsfrage) for Ernst Jünger Festschrift.
* 1956 Visited Lyon with Jean Beaufret. Der Satz vom Grund, part II, summer semester; delivered two lectures with the same title at the Bremen Club, May 25, and at the University of Vienna, October 24. Was ist das-die Philosophie?, and Zur Seinsfrage published. Lectures on Hegel's Science of Logic, winter semester. Paul Klee, lecture in Freiburg.
* 1957 Der Satz vom Grund (GA10), Hebel--der Hausfreund, and Identität und Differenz published. Die Onto-Theo-logische Verfassung der Metaphysik lecture in Todtnauberg, 24 February. Der Satz der Identität lecture during celebration of the 500th year of the founding of the University of Freiburg, June 27. Address at Heidelberg Academy. Das Wesen der Sprache, lecture at University of Freiburg, December 14 and 18.
* 1958 Das Wesen der Sprache, lecture at University of Freiburg, February 7. Visited France, in March. Lecture on "Hegel and the Greeks" in Aix-en-Provence, March 20. Dichten und Denken. Zu Stefan Georges Gedicht 'Das Wort', lecture in the Burgtheater of Vienna, May 11. Hegel und die Griechen lecture at the Heidelberg Academy of Sciences, July 26. Das Wort, lectures. Grundsätze des Denkens written.
* 1959 Unterwegs zur Sprache (GA12), Gelassenheit published. Der Weg zur Sprache lecture at the Bavarian Academy of Fine Arts, Munich, January. First Zollikoner seminar. Hölderlins Erde und Himmel, lecture in Cuvilliés Theater in Munich, June 6, during meeting of the Hölderlin Society. Nominated honorary citizen of Messkirch, September 26. Dank an die Messkircher Heimat, speech in Messkirch, September 27. Die Bestimmung der Künste im Gegenwärtigen Weltalter, lecture in Baden-Baden. Conversation with Heribert Heinrich, October 14.
* 1960 Receives Hebel Prize in Baden-Württemberg, May 10. Sprache und Heimat, lecture in Wesselburen, July 2. Hegel und die Griechen, in Festschrift for Gadamer. Seminar with Beaufret in Bremen.
* 1961 Nietzsche I and II published. Kants These über das Sein lecture in Kiel, May 17.
* 1962 Zeit und Sein, lecture at Freiburg, January 31. Attends Feast of the Captains in Bremen, February. Vorwort, letter to William J. Richardson, April 1962. First trip to Greece, in April. Seminar on Zeit und Sein September 11-13, Todtnauberg. Die Frage nach dem Ding published. Kants These über das Sein published as part of Festschrift for Eric Wolf.
* 1964 Letter to a conference on the nature of theology at Drew University, Madison, New Jersey, written March 11; published in Phänomenologie und Theologie, 1970. La fin de la Philosophie et la tache de la pensée presented at a colloquium organised by Unesco in Paris, April 21-23. Über Abraham a Santa Clara, speech in the St. Martin lecture hall in the church annex, Messkirch, May 2. Conversation with Thai monk, Bikkhu Maha Mani, on TV in Baden-Baden, September 28. Excerpt from the 1928 lecture on Leibniz published in Zeit und Geschichte, a Festschrift for Rudolf Bultmann.
* 1966 Reiner Schürmann meets Heidegger. First Le Thor seminar, September 5-9. Der Spiegel interview, September 23. Heraclitus Seminar with Eugene Fink, winter semester.
* 1967 Die Herkunft der Kunst und die Bestimmung des Denkens, lecture to Athens Academy of Sciences and Arts, April 4. Meets Paul Celan at Freiburg, July 24. Celan visits Todtnauberg the next day; writes "Todtnauberg" poem August 1. Wegmarken published. Visits Greece and Sicily.
* 1968 Hölderlin: Das Gedicht, lecture in Amriswil. Second Le Thor seminar (Hegel: Differenz des Fichteschen und Schellingschen Systems), in Provence, August 30 to September 8.
* 1969 Glenn Gray visits Heidegger, April 19. Third Le Thor seminar (Kant: Über den einzig möglichen Beweisgrund vom Dasien Gottes), September 2-11. Television interview with Richard Wisser, September 28. Zur Sache des Denkens published. Die Kunst und der Raum: L'art et l'espace written.
* 1970 Meets Celan again, March. Phänomenologie und Theologie published. Die Frage nach der Bestimmung der Kunst, lecture in Munich.
* 1971 Thomas Sheehan visits Heidegger in Freiburg.
* 1972 Von der Un-Verborgenheit: Fridolin Wiplingers Bericht von einem Gespräch mit Martin Heidegger.
* 1973 Zähringen seminar, September 6-8.
* 1974 Wrote greeting to symposium in Beirut, November.
* 1975 Hannah Arendt died, December 4, in Manhattan.
* 1976 Died in Freiburg, May 26. Buried in Messkirch, May 28. Der Spiegel interview published, May 31.

Martin Heidegger is widely regarded as one of the central figures of the existentialist movement and has had a major influence in the areas of phenomenology and ontology. His seminal work, Sein und Zeit, affected the philosophical and cultural landscape of continental Europe for decades. Heidegger's contribution to philosophy is remarkably monolithic in its devotion to metaphysics and ontology. Time and again Heidegger returned to the question, "what is the meaning of being?" One of Heidegger's later works [17], The Question Concerning Technology (1977), deals with the issue of dehumanization in modern society, what Heidegger called the "darkening of the world." The book was based on four lectures delivered in 1949 and captured Heidegger's ontological approach to issues important to post-World War Europe. Heidegger was greatly concerned about technical nihilism, and for a time believed that Nazism could provide a solution. After the war, Heidegger described the catastrophe as, "the confrontation of European humanity with global technology" (Heim, 1993, p. 55). However, throughout his work, Heidegger is careful to approach technology with neither praise nor blame-neither as an optimist nor pessimist. Heidegger's concept of technology is not defined by things or processes. For Heidegger, "technology's essence is nothing technological" (1977, p. 4). Instead it is a system, Gestell, looming but undefined (Heim, p. 57). Gestell [18], literally "framing", is an all-encompassing view of technology, not as a means to an end, but rather a mode of human existence. As such, the real danger of technology for Heidegger was the process by which the machines begin to alter our existence. According to Heim,

What Heidegger called "the essence of technology" infiltrates human existence more intimately than anything humans could create. The danger of technology lies in the transformation of the human being, by which human actions and aspirations are fundamentally distorted. Not that machines can run amok, or even that we might misunderstand ourselves through a faulty comparison with machines. Instead, technology enters the inmost recesses of human existence, transforming the way we know and think and will. Technology is, in essence, a mode of human existence, and we could not appreciate its mental infiltrations until the computer became a major cultural phenomenon. (p. 61)

According to Mitcham (1994) "modern technology in particular is a revealing that sets up and challenges nature to yield a kind of energy that can be independently stored and transmitted" (p. 51). This is what other authors have referred to as "productionist metaphysics." This concept of "standing reserve", resources which are stored in anticipation of consumption, is conveyed by Heidegger's use of the word bestand.

Heidegger's ontological philosophy has seen renewed popularity as advances in communication technology continues to define new limits of human existence. Two recent example of works on Heidegger are: Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity: Technology, Politics, Art (1994), by Michael Zimmerman, and, RUATV? Heidegger and the Televisual (1993), edited by Tony Fry. In RUATV?, Heidegger's metaphysics are used to explore television as a cybernetic medium. In the essay "Switchings", Tony Fry wrote,

With his notion of the "will to will" Heidegger prefigured much of the critical concern with cybernetics. He put forward an analysis that loaded technology with a determinate existence and an impetus of its own beyond any direct control of the "will to power." (p. 24)

Heidegger died in 1976, long before the personal computer and computer networks [19], such as the Web, became a reality. However, as early as 1957 Heidegger foresaw the computer, what he called the "language machine," or the sprachmaschine.

The language machine regulates and adjusts in advance the mode of our possible usage of language through mechanical energies and functions. The language machine is-and above all, is still becoming-one way in which modern technology controls the mode and the world of language as such. Meanwhile, the impress is still maintained that man is the master of the language machine. But the truth of the matter might well be that the language machine takes language into its management and thus masters the essence of the human being. (Heidegger, quoted in Heim, p. 8, see also p. 62-66)


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