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In this chapter, Pål Rykkja Gilbert explores Martin Heidegger’s early encounter with Aristotle by inquiring into his readings of central concepts in Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics in the 1920s, with a particular focus upon the question how the specifically “ethical content” of these concepts fare in the hands of Heidegger. Phronēsis (practical wisdom) and prohairesis (resolve) provide the guiding thread; Heidegger’s treatment of the former has been heavily debated by scholars of his thought, while his treatment of the latter, a concept that has been less discussed in Aristotelian scholarship as well, has received less attention. Gilbert contends that understanding Heidegger’s treatment of prohairesis is essential to a full appreciation of his interpretation of both phronēsis and of Aristotle’s concept of ethical virtue/ virtue of character. Heidegger’s interpretation of the Ethics has been repeatedly charged with representing an “ontologisation” responsible for more or less sinister results. Gilbert argues that this is largely mistaken, while bringing into relief important ways in which Heidegger departs from traditional interpretations of specific points. xxx concludes that his reading constitutes both a rewarding perspective from which to view Aristotle’s ethical theory and a privileged path toward an understanding of Heidegger’s own conception of authenticity.

In: Phenomenological Interpretations of Ancient Philosophy
Ancient philosophy has from the outset inspired phenomenological philosophers in a special way. Phenomenological Interpretations of Ancient Philosophy offers fresh perspectives on the manner in which ancient Greek thought has influenced phenomenology and traces the history of this reception. Unlike various related treatments, the present volume offers a broad account of this topic that includes chapters on Edmund Husserl, Martin Heidegger, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Jacob Klein, Hannah Arendt, Eugen Fink, Jan Patočka, Emmanuel Levinas, and Jacques Derrida.

This collection of essays, edited by Kristian Larsen and Pål Rykkja Gilbert, is addressed to students of ancient philosophy and the phenomenological tradition as well as to readers who have a general interest in the fascinating, yet complex, connection between ancient Greek thought and phenomenological philosophy.

Contributions by: Jussi Backman, Pål Rykkja Gilbert, Burt Hopkins, Filip Karfík, Alexander Kozin, Kristian Larsen, Arnaud Macé, Claudio Majolino, Hans Ruin, Thomas Schwarz Wentzer, Vigdis Songe-Møller, Tanja Staehler, Morten S. Thaning and Charlotta Weigelt.
In: Phenomenological Interpretations of Ancient Philosophy