Cover

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Contents

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Editor’s Foreword

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pp. ix-xi

Indiana University Press is proud to launch the Indiana Series in the Philosophy of Technology with the following trio: John Dewey's Pragmatic Technology, by Larry A. Hickman; Technology and the Lifeworld: From Garden to Earth, by Don Ihde; and Heidegger's Confrontation with Modernity, by Michael E. Zimmerman...

Acknowledgments

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p. xii

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Introduction

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pp. xiii-xxii

This book discusses how a major twentieth-century philosopher, Martin Heidegger, interpreted and evaluated modern technology. For Heidegger, "modern technology" had three interrelated meanings: first, the techniques, devices, systems, and production processes usually associated with industrialism; second...

List of Abbreviations

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pp. xxiii-xxvii

Division One Heidegger and the Politics of Productionist Metaphysics: The Longing for a New World of Work

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Chapter 1: Germany’s Confrontation with Modernity

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pp. 3-16

For Martin Heidegger, "modernity" constituted the final stage in the history of the decline of the West from the great age of the Greeks to the technological nihilism of the twentieth century. He believed that the Greeks initiated "productionist metaphysics" when they concluded that for an entity "to be" meant for it to be produced. While what they meant by "production" and "making," for Heidegger...

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Chapter 2: Political Aspects of Heidegger’s Early Critique of Modern Technology

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pp. 17-33

Viewing industrial technology through the optic of anti-modernist political views, early Heidegger regarded it neither as a neutral instrument for human ends, nor as a sign of humanity's evolution to a higher stage, but instead as a symptom of the final epoch in the long decline of humanity's understanding of the being of entities...

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Chapter 3: Heidegger, National Socialism, and Modern Technology

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pp. 34-45

From the very beginning of his career, Heidegger was concerned about the relation between burning issues of "factical existence," on the one hand, and problems in the history of metaphysics, on the other. He saw an internal relationship between the decline of the West into nihilism and the decline of Western humanity's understanding of being. During the 1920s, however, his critique of modern technology tended to be overshadowed by the ontological analyses that were...

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Chapter 4: J

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pp. 46-65

Although for his conception of modern technology Heidegger owed more to Ernst J

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Chapter 5: Heidegger’s Appropriation of Jünger’s Thought, 1933–34

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pp. 66-76

Anyone familiar with Heidegger's thought will recognize in J

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Chapter 6: Jünger’s Thought in Heidegger’s Mature Concept of Technology

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pp. 77-93

As we have seen, in the first phase of his confrontation with J

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Chapter 7: National Socialism, Nietzsche, and the Work of Art

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pp. 94-112

In part because of his confrontation with J

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Chapter 8: H

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pp. 113-133

Toward the end of his life, Heidegger maintained that his thought was essentially related to Holderlin's poetry. [Sp: 214/281] This relationship is strikingly visible in Heidegger's 1934-35 lectures, Holderlins Hymnen "Germanien" und "Der Rhein."1 These lectures are crucial for understanding Heidegger's vision of National Socialism as originating...

Division Two Heidegger’s Critique of Productionist Metaphysics

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Chapter 9: Equipment, Work, World, and Being

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pp. 137-149

In Division One of this work, we saw how Heidegger's concept of modem technology arose within the context of his negative evaluation of and political resistance to the influx of modernist ideas and industrial technology. We also saw that he conceived of modem technology as the outcome of the history of productionist metaphysics. Because in Division One we focused on the...

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Chapter 10: Being and Time: Penultimate Stage of Productionist Metaphysics?

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pp. 150-165

Hubert L. Dreyfus has argued that the instrumentalist orientation of Beingand Time unwittingly promoted the technological disclosure of entities.1 In this chapter, we shall see that while Dreyfus's argument wins support from many passages in Being and Time, there are other passages from early Heidegger's writings which help to explain and thus to temper the apparent instrumentalism of Being and Time...

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Chapter 11: The History of Productionist Metaphysics

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pp. 166-190

When Heidegger saw the paradox at work in his "foundational historicism," i.e., when he discovered that he could not reconcile a quest for a priori structures of human existence with a historicist conception of human existence, he also began questioning whether the instrumentalist orientation to things was a universal feature of human existence. If Greek instrumentalism did not result from a "natural" or universal human tendency, then he would have to devise a different account of the origin...

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Chapter 12: Production Cycles of the “Laboring Animal”: A Manifestation of the Will to Will

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pp. 191-204

In the post-Darwinian era, technology has often been defined in terms of the adaptive behavior of the human organism. Without tools, we are told, early humans would scarcely have been able to survive in a world full of predators organically "equipped" with keen smell and hearing, powerful limbs, penetrating fangs, and tearing claws. The human animal's advantage over the other animals was its intelligence....

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Chapter 13: How Modern Technology Transforms the Everyday World—and Points to a New One

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pp. 205-221

Two decades ago, Alvin Toffler coined the term "future shock" to describe the fact that technological innovations are occurring so rapidly that they are transforming the socio-political realm in a dizzying, even dangerous way.1 Toffler asked: How can existing institutions, social practices, values, and expectations for the future keep pace with the accelerating flood of new devices and systems? Heidegger, too, experienced...

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Chapter 14: Authentic Production: Techne as the Art of Ontological Disclosure

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pp. 222-247

Heidegger believed that his task was not only to deconstruct the history of productionist metaphysics, but also to prepare the way for an alternative to that history. That is, he was not satisfied merely to reveal how the productionist understanding of being had stamped contemporary humanity with Gestell, his version of J

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Conclusion: Critical Reflections on Heidegger’s Concept of Modern Technology

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pp. 248-274

Heidegger's most important contribution to the philosophy of technology was his claim that modern technology is the final stage in the history of the self-concealment of being. Other authors to whom Heidegger was indebted, such as Spengler and J

Notes

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pp. 275-298

Index

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pp. 299-306