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Heidegger Papers Talk at Soho Goethe Institute  Martin Heidegger and Nazism is a controversial subject.


By the beginning of 1934, there were reports in Berlin that
Heidegger had established himself as ‘the philosopher of
National Socialism’. But to other Nazi thinkers, Heidegger’s
philosophy appeared too abstract, too difficult, to be of much
use […] his enemies were Imageable to enlist the support of Alfred Rosenberg, whose own
ambition it was to be the philosopher of Nazism himself. Denied
a role at the national level, and increasingly frustrated with
the minutiae of academic politics – which seemed to him to
betray a sad absence of the new spirit he had hoped would
permeate the universities – Heidegger resigned his post in
April 1934
the German existentialist philosopher Karl
Jaspers, who wrote in a letter to the head of the
de-Nazification commission that “Heidegger’s manner of
thinking, which to me seems in its essence unfree, dictatorial,
and incapable of communication, would today be disastrous in its
pedagogical effects.

During the hearings of the Denazification Committee, Hannah Arendt, Heidegger’s former student and lover, who was Jewish, spoke on his behalf. (Arendt very cautiously resumed her friendship with Heidegger after the war, despite or even because of the widespread contempt for Heidegger and his political sympathies, and despite his being forbidden to teach for many years.

 The black notebooks were written between 1931 and 1941 show Heidegger denouncing the rootlessness and spirit of “empty rationality and calculability” of the Jews, as he works out revisions to his deepest metaphysical ideas in relation to political events of the day.

 

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