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Sounding/SilenceMartin Heidegger at the Limits of Poetics$
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David Nowell Smith

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780823251537

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823251537.001.0001

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Reading Heidegger Reading

Reading Heidegger Reading

(p.137) 4 Reading Heidegger Reading

David Nowell Smith

Fordham University Press

The chapter argues that Heidegger's Erläuterungen of poems should not be read as ‘exegeses’ but, following the German more literally, as ‘soundings-out’ of the poems, continuing the project of ‘preservation’ that he had outlined in ‘Origin of the Work of Art’: a mode of reading, listening, or beholding that, submitting itself to the openness of beings the work brings about, is thereby brought outside of itself. Poetry allows thinking, as it were, to think beyond its own limits. This raises two questions: firstly, do Heidegger's readings think beyond their own limits? and secondly, does Heidegger's depiction of the relation between Dichten and Denken account for the way he reads± The chapter finishes by offering close readings of Heidegger readings poems by Hölderlin, Trakl and George, paying particular attention to the points of transition between analysis of the poem and the claims Heidegger wishes to make, seeing how reading and poem intersect and diverge, and how the poems inflect, and infect, Heidegger's readings, and lead him to confront the limits of his own thought.

Keywords:   Trakl, Georg, George, Stefan, Hermeneutics, Close Reading, Rhythm

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