Self and Nature in Heidegger

In: Research in Phenomenology
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  • 1 Western Sydney University

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This article provides an analysis of the development of the notions of “self” and “nature” through three stages of Heidegger’s thought. The main contention is that Heidegger’s conceptions of the self and nature are indissolubly connected to each other, and that such connection appears through three concerns that represent important elements of continuity: 1) the “irreducibility of the self,” conceived in a non-subjectivist way; 2) the recovery of a non-objectivist “originary” account of nature; 3) the overall commitment to the overcoming of the polarization between subject and object. I argue that there is a parallelism in the way self and nature are addressed in each of the three phases; and that the transformations of the notions are functional to the project of addressing the concerns mentioned earlier. I conclude by addressing the “violence of nature,” which remains a “blind spot” in the philosophy of the later Heidegger.

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