Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ Free Shipping
Country Path Conversations (Studies in Continental Thought) Paperback – August 14, 2016
See the Best Books of 2018 So Far
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for the best books of the year so far in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Bret Ellis . . . provides a thoughtful, clear and highly readable translation of these conversations. He includes key German terms in the text and occasionally provides a brief discussion of the resonances of certain German terms likely to be unfamiliar to even those readers with second language German. His informative introduction places the work in the context of Heidegger’s biography and philosophy as well as within the work’s social and historical context. (Philosophy in Review)
Not overly technical in philosophical style, it will be of interest to philosophers outside of Heidegger studies. At the same time, it will be of interest to those who are concerned with Heidegger's writings and continental philosophy generally. (James Risser Seattle University)
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The first conversation, among a physicist, a scholar, and a "guide", leads through some familiar late-Heidegger themes -- the limits of representational thought (and language), subject-object metaphysics, the dependence of modern science upon the technological world-view, and his emerging way of speaking about what he believes has been covered up by these prevalent ways of living in and making the world understandable.
It's the last of those themes that I think is most distinctive in this and in the other two conversations as well. Heidegger develops more clearly, for me at least, a sense of why the traditional methods of philosophy -- precisely stated propositions methodically constructed and argued for -- fail to provide what he needs to articulate his later thinking. What he means to do is to point, to lead by speaking, or "surmising", to a thoroughly different, and for him more primordial way of having a world. Even phrases like "having a world" fail because they inevitably conjure elements of exactly the metaphysics he means to call into question and counter. The difficulty of his own language -- terms like "regioning", "non-willing", "releasement", "unconcealing" , "waiting" -- is that we are compelled to fit what he is saying back into the very metaphysics and the very understanding of language that he is opposing.
Also in that first conversation is a consistent thread about willing in its relationship to technology and the understanding of the world as a world of objects over against a subject. Here Heidegger espouses "non-willing" as a releasing of this kind of demand toward the world that it offer itself up for human understanding and use.
The final conversation, between an "older man" and a "younger man" in a Russian prisoner of war camp, provides some relatively rare discussion of how Heidegger saw the war itself within the dangers of technology, expanding on some enigmatic remarks in Discourse on Thinking about a danger greater than weapons of self-annihilation. Here Heidegger is clear and explicit in his claims that the very ideals of modern life -- the securing of a high standard of living for all through modern technology and what we would now call the life of consumption -- represents the triumph of a devastating forgetfulness of the more primordial relationship to being, to the world, that he is trying to remind us of and bring us back to.
In the end, I think what we get out of these conversations is a sense of speaking or conversing as a way of coming to recognize, without the kind of propositional clarity we long for, the direction in which Heidegger is taking us and what he means by "releasement". The metaphor of the country path is apt, in that Heidegger certainly doesn't take us to a sure destination but rather only farther along a path.
No one should be misled into thinking that, because these three writings are presented as "conversations", they will flow more easily or be more easily comprehended than Heidegger's other later writings. These conversations are difficult to follow.
Like all this phase of Heidegger's writings, one is baffled by the fact that Heidegger's understanding of the modernist project and the dynamics of the modern understanding of the human being (the controlling, willing, technologically driven all pervasive ethos of this epoch) is second to none, and yet he was such a bastard. It poisons, vitiates the whole plausibility of his critique, a critique which is so necessary -- if he believes all this, then there must be something wrong with it, he was so misguided, and yet.... he's like a slightly bent key in a lock: fits smoothly, but jams when you try and open it. If ever there was somebody who was in the way of the Way, he's it. He's sort of like the last temptation, the one closest to the truth who is the most dangerous and the furthest away. These essays are all like that. Maddening.