Country Path Conversations
Publication Year: 2010
First published in German in 1995, volume 77 of Heidegger's Complete Works consists of three imaginary conversations written as World War II was coming to an end. Composed at a crucial moment in history and in Heidegger's own thinking, these conversations present meditations on science and technology; the devastation of nature, the war, and evil; and the possibility of release from representational thinking into a more authentic relation with being and the world. The first conversation involves a scientist, a scholar, and a guide walking together on a country path; the second takes place between a teacher and a tower-warden, and the third features a younger man and an older man in a prisoner-of-war camp in Russia, where Heidegger's two sons were missing in action. Unique because of their conversational style, the lucid and precise translation of these texts offers insight into the issues that engaged Heidegger's wartime and postwar thinking.
Published by: Indiana University Press
Series: Studies in Continental Thought
The present volume is based on a set of manuscripts which Heidegger wrote in 1944–1945, but which he did not publish during his lifetime apart from an excerpt from the first conversation (discussed below). Heidegger did make plans, however, for this trilogy of “conversations” to be published in his collected works—or rather, as his motto for the ...
1. Ἀγχιβασίη: A Triadic Conversation on a Country Path between a Scientist, a Scholar, and a Guide
Scholar: This past autumn we met for the first time on this country path. That meeting was a splendid coincidence, for I owe a precious inspiration to it: an old Greek word occurred to me, which since then has seemed to me to be a very appropriate name for what...
2. The Teacher Meets the Tower Warden at the Door to the Tower Stairway
Teacher: So I have come then too late. Tower Warden : For what? Teacher: To solve the wondrous, which has held me in unrest throughout the day. Tower Warden : And that is? Teacher: Surely you must know...
3. Evening Conversation: In a Prisoner of War Camp in Russia, between a Younger and an Older Man
Younger Man: As we were marching to our workplace this morning, out of the rustling of the expansive forest I was suddenly overcome by something healing. Throughout the entire day I meditated on wherein this something that heals could rest...
The conversations collected in this volume were composed in the winter of 1944/45, as the Second World War was approaching its inexorable end. The date 7 April 1945 was inscribed at the end of “Ἀγχιβασίη,” and 8 May 1945 at the end of the conversation in a prisoner of war camp. The conversation between a Teacher and a Tower Warden bears no date, but ...