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The Early Heidegger's Philosophy of Life:

Facticity, Being, and Language

Scott M. Campbell

Publication Year: 2012

In his early lecture courses, Martin Heidegger exhibited an abiding interest in human life. He believed that human life has philosophical import while it is actually being lived; language has philosophical import while it is being spoken. In this book, Scott Campbell traces the development of Heidegger's ideas about factical life through his interest in Greek thought and its concern with Being. He contends that Heidegger's existential concerns about human life and his ontological concerns about the meaning of Being crystallize in the notion of Dasein as the Being of factical human life. Emphasizing the positive aspects of everydayness, Campbell explores the contexts of meaning embedded within life; the intensity of average, everyday life; the temporal immediacy of life in early Christianity; the hermeneutic pursuit of life's self-alienation; factical spatiality; the temporalizing of history within life; the richness of the world; and the facticity of speaking in Plato and Aristotle. He shows how Heidegger presents a way of grasping human life as riddled with deception but also charged with meaning and open to revelation and insight.

Published by: Fordham University Press

Series: Perspectives in Continental Philosophy

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. ix-x

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pp. xi-xv

The impetus for this book came from a set of observations that Dr. William Richardson, S.J., once made in a public forum. He said, and I paraphrase: What about the facticity of the situation?— the immediacy of life?— this is what Heidegger was trying to work out early on— especially in his analysis of Christianity...

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pp. xvii-xxi

Some of the work presented in this book has already appeared in academic journals. For material that is presented in Chapters 3, 4, 7, and 9, the author acknowledges its original publication in Philosophy Today, Existentia, and Heidegger Studies. The author thanks the editors of these journals for their permission...

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pp. 1-20

From the beginning of his philosophical career until the end, Martin Heidegger followed one path. He was interested in the question of Being. Much has been said about the path Heidegger traveled. Being, for Heidegger, is the original event or process that lets all beings be. It is that original source that, though not itself...

Part I: Philosophical Vitality (1919– 21)

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pp. 21

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1. Science and the Originality of Life

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pp. 23-45

Reading Martin Heidegger’s early lecture courses is exciting and not simply because of the various ways in which they presage concepts and themes in his later work. Many of the initial interpretive forays into these courses have focused on the development of Heidegger’s concepts on the way to Being and Time and beyond...

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2. Christian Facticity

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pp. 46-59

In the last chapter we saw that because factical life emerges from an origin, it remains in constant renewal. This renewal of factical life is such that phenomenology, the original science of life, would always experience its vitality in myriad ways. Heidegger refers to this as the tapestry of life, and science can restore...

Part II: Factical Life (1921– 22)

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pp. 61

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3. Grasping Life as a Topic

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pp. 63-82

To reiterate, the aim of my analysis is to discern the significance of factical life for the early Heidegger. More explicitly, I am trying to determine the way in which factical life is an experience of life that bears philosophical merit in itself. In other words, I am trying to determine the points of connection between life...

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4. Ruinance

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pp. 83-99

In this chapter, I am still looking at Phenomenological Interpretations of Aristotle: Initiation into Phenomenological Research (G 61, from winter semester, 1921– 22), the text on factical life, but my focus is now on the relationships among factical life, its world, and what Heidegger describes as factical life’s ruinance...

Part III: The Hermeneutics of Facticity (1922– 23)

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pp. 101

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5. The Retrieval of History

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pp. 103-119

“Phenomenological Interpretations with Respect to Aristotle: Indication of the Hermeneutical Situation,” known as Heidegger’s “lost manuscript,” is the prospectus that he sent to Marburg and Göttingen for the purpose of attaining teaching positions at those universities. It is both historically and philosophically important...

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6. Facticity and Ontology

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pp. 120-137

In Ontology: The Hermeneutics of Facticity (G 63), from the summer semester of 1923, we find a remarkably illuminating analysis of the richness and vitality that emerge from a factical interpretation of life. Heidegger offered this course one semester after he had written the prospectus outlining his plans for future research...

Part IV: The Language of Life (1923– 25)

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pp. 139

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7. Factical Speaking

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pp. 141-161

This renewed investigation of phenomenology brings a factical understanding of language to the center of Heidegger’s thinking. It takes place through a retrieval of speaking in the Greek world. In this and subsequent lecture courses, all of which preceded the publication of Being and Time, Heidegger investigated...

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8. Rhetoric

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pp. 162-185

In what follows, I move through this analysis of the relationship between speaking and conceptuality in order to develop a sense of authentic speaking in Heidegger’s reading of Aristotle. Heidegger is investigating the Rhetoric in order to retrieve a sense of authentic language from the Greek world and, importantly, from the...

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9. Sophistry

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pp. 186-210

An understanding of Plato’s dialogue the Sophist, Heidegger tells us, demands that we acquire the proper vantage from which to understand Plato. That standpoint comes from Aristotle. By going through Aristotle to Plato, and not from Plato to Aristotle, Heidegger claims that he is simply adhering to the hermeneutic...

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pp. 211-224

From his earliest lecture courses, as we have seen, Heidegger was interested in the relationship that the facticity of life has to the meaning of Being. This connection between human existence and ontology crystallizes in the notion of Dasein, which, as the there of Being, we might also call the Being of factical human life. As...


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pp. 225-262

Glossary of Greek Terms and Expressions

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pp. 263-266


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pp. 267-276


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pp. 277-294

Perspectives in Continental Philosophy

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pp. 295-298

E-ISBN-13: 9780823246212
Print-ISBN-13: 9780823242191
Print-ISBN-10: 0823242196

Page Count: 288
Publication Year: 2012

Series Title: Perspectives in Continental Philosophy