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Thread: Does a Nazi Deserve a Place Among Philosophers?

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    Does a Nazi Deserve a Place Among Philosophers?

    For decades the German philosopher Martin Heidegger has been the subject of passionate debate. His critique of Western thought and technology has penetrated deeply into architecture, psychology and literary theory and inspired some of the most influential intellectual movements of the 20th century. Yet he was also a fervent Nazi. Now a soon-to-be published book in English has revived the long-running debate about whether the man can be separated from his philosophy. Drawing on new evidence, the author, Emmanuel Faye, argues fascist and racist ideas are so woven into the fabric of Heidegger's theories that they no longer deserve to be called philosophy.
    Continued: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/09/bo...hilosophy.html

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    Mad

    Quote Originally Posted by Todesengel View Post
    [Quoting from the article] "the author, Emmanuel Faye, argues fascist and racist ideas are so woven into the fabric of Heidegger's theories that they no longer deserve to be called philosophy."
    This kind of thing makes me SO angry. In general, I'm pro-intellectual, pro-science, and pro-academia. But philosophers are exactly the people who are supposed to know better than this kind of nonsense.

    All philosophy is culturally embedded and motivated. That ground was covered decades ago by the post-modernists. A ridiculous claim like saying that something "isn't philosophy" because one doesn't agree with the values or stance that it takes is completely antithetical to everything that these philosophers supposedly hold dear.

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    Have to look him up. I thought Hitler was a philosopher and National Socialism a philosophy of life. Or am I missing something?

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    Bloody French
    Life is a well of delight; but where the rabble also drink, there all fountains are poisoned.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rainman View Post
    I thought Hitler was a philosopher and National Socialism a philosophy of life.
    Hitler's ideas and attitudes can be examined in terms of philosophy, but he did not pursue philosophy as a discipline. Heidegger did.

    He is most famous for his ontological works, chiefly "Sein und Zeit" (Being and Time).



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    Quote Originally Posted by VergesEngst View Post
    This kind of thing makes me SO angry. In general, I'm pro-intellectual, pro-science, and pro-academia. But philosophers are exactly the people who are supposed to know better than this kind of nonsense.

    All philosophy is culturally embedded and motivated. That ground was covered decades ago by the post-modernists. A ridiculous claim like saying that something "isn't philosophy" because one doesn't agree with the values or stance that it takes is completely antithetical to everything that these philosophers supposedly hold dear.
    this is one of my favorites, a blog called 'philosophical misadventures' is run by a new zealander with an MA in philosophy with this stated aim: 'This site exists to collect, document, and comment upon the various missteps, mistakes, and plain absurdities of prominent philosophers'

    naturally his critiques include 'misadventures' on race by philosophers, based on all all the PC assumptions of our age, and any 'racism' by philosophers is therefore wrong
    The funniest shit, Hume on racism; David Hume states he is 'apt to belive' that some races are not as predeposed to higher culture than others, based on history. The blogger then says Hume's empericism deserted him because there were 2 black professors of philosophy at the time, etc. The funny thing is, the blogger things he is engaging some deep philosophical criticism, but in fact he is just reciting PC dogma of his age, in the same way that someone 100 years ago would recite the dogma of their age (races are different) and someone 100 years from now the dogma of that age (whatever that may be) and trying to pass his insite of as philosophical while commiting the exact same error (repeating the prejudice of his time) his discipline is supposed to oppose.

    and 'Hume's empericism' in this case actually turns out to be most likely (I would say 100% ) correct, blacks do have lower AVERAGE iqs etc. and lower cultural achievements, the presence of two black professors of philosophy notwithstanding (indeed that's exactly why emperical data is valuable, it looks at the whole picture and not two examples ) .

    I wish I could kick that blogger in the nuts

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    The same blogger has an article on Heidegger and the Nazis, of course, btw.
    Includes BBC video documentary on Heidegger and his relationship to the Nazi regime (I haven't watched this yet).

    also re. this comment in the original article posted by Todesengel:
    Drawing on new evidence, the author, Emmanuel Faye, argues fascist and racist ideas are so woven into the fabric of Heidegger's theories that they no longer deserve to be called philosophy.
    'fascistic' and 'racist' ideas could also be seen to be woven into the fabric of Plato's philosophy (indeed many have said this, Popper etc).
    If all philosophy is 'a series of footnotes to Plato', then maybe there is no philosophy at all, according to Emmanuel Faye .

    Crap like that pisses me off. After making the above post I was charged up and left this angry reply on the Hume article. I look forward to his response
    Quote Originally Posted by Renwein
    This article is a travesty. Hume was merely speculating on a general trend based on the emperical evidence availible to him (the state of the entire continent). You, on the other hand, are countering with specific cherry picked examples (a professor of philosophy here, a schoolmaster there). The value of empericism is in detecting the general trend, not finding anomalies and generalising from them. Today’s emperical evidence on IQ for instance backs Hume’s speculations. If you are familiar with this literature (such as the Bell Curve etc)(which you show no sign of being), you should mention and attempt to refute it (either with your own reason or the work of others such as James Flynn). Instead, you commit the sin (arguing the biased viewpoint of your time) philosophy is supposed to overcome, based on a few examples (the mistake empericim overcomes). Hume was philosophizing, you are merely in bondage to your prejudices, not vice versa.
    In my eyes therefore this post is like a parody of your entire website, you are a laughing stock, and you should forsake your MD.

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    This of course something that could be expected. If you consider how strongly they want to censor thoughts that do not fit in a cultural Marxist frame work. And this writing is probably not the first attempt to strip Heidegger from his status as a philosopher.

    But I hope the debate that this book will no doubt cause will lead to greater interest in his work.

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    Informal logic has a simple analysis of Faye's 'critique': It simply applies to it the common fallacy of an argumentum ad hominem - if he argues that Heidegger's philosophy can't be good because he supported a particular political ideology, then that is not a valid argument.

    Philosophy has long accepted that it is the value of the argument, not the person making it, which is tested for debate at the table of the wise. If this author doesn't understand that simple maxime then he doesn't belong anywhere near philosophy, full stop.
    -In kalte Schatten versunken... /Germaniens Volk erstarrt / Gefroren von Lügen / In denen die Welt verharrt-
    -Die alte Seele trauernd und verlassen / Verblassend in einer erklärbaren Welt / Schwebend in einem Dunst der Wehmut / Ein Schrei der nur unmerklich gellt-
    -Auch ich verspüre Demut / Vor dem alten Geiste der Ahnen / Wird es mir vergönnt sein / Gen Walhalla aufzufahren?-

    (Heimdalls Wacht, In kalte Schatten versunken, stanzas 4-6)

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