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The Banality of Heidegger$
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Jean-Luc Nancy

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780823275922

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823275922.001.0001

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Chapter:
(p.49) 11
Source:
The Banality of Heidegger
Author(s):

Jean-Luc Nancy

Jeff Fort

Publisher:
Fordham University Press
DOI:10.5422/fordham/9780823275922.003.0011

Grace, as something that cannot be foreseen requires a flaw, a breach or an insecurity, may be related in Heidegger to what he never ceased calling a task, one that required deferral, interrogative suspense, and uncertainty. While Heidegger maintained such suspense, he ran the risk of a too great certainty regarding being, of reifying it into a substance. His thought thus opened both a rich philosophical resource, but also opened it to a sordid sacrificial violence. Heidegger often speaks of sacrifice in his work, and of war. If we relate such statements to the thinking of destruction and ending found in the Black Notebooks, and to the role of the Jews in this thinking, and if we take the true measure of his evocations of sacrifice and destruction, we are left speechless in the face of a harsh truth: Heidegger not only was anti-Semitic, he attempted to think to its final extremity a deep historico-destinal necessity of anti-Semitism. In this light, Heidegger’s anti-Semitism can be seen as even more grave than the biologism of the Nazis’ racism.

Keywords:   anti-Semitism, being, grace, race, sacrifice

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