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Engaging Heidegger (New Studies in Phenomenology and Hermeneutics) Hardcover – April 24, 2010

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Editorial Reviews


"Richard Capobianco's impressive book, Engaging Heidegger, tackles some fundamental questions in Heidegger's thought, and does so in a remarkably clear and pointed manner." (Lawrence J. Hatab, Gatherings: The Heidegger Circle Annual, vol. 1, 2011)

"Richard Capobianco's book, Engaging Heidegger, is an example of the best type of scholarship in Heidegger studies.  He offers eight careful studies that trace developments, changes, turns and returns in Heidegger's thought as they relate to specific themes and topics." (William Koch, Human Studies, vol. 34, 2011)

"Capobianco provides a much needed clarification of the development of Heidegger's thought … It is a valuable contribution to scholarship concerned with Heidegger's differing approaches to the question of Being as well as to the development of his concept of Lichtung." (Andrew Ryder, Studies in Social and Political Thought, Vol. 18: Winter 2010 )

"Engaging Heidegger is refreshing for its clarity and scholarly precision … I am sure that others will join me in looking forward to further stimulating and illuminating reflections on Heidegger by this careful scholar and insightful thinker." (Bret W. Davis, Notre Dame Philosophical Review )

"The book as a whole presents a well-argued, independent view that will interest and challenge specialists...and will serve as an excellent introductory guide for students." --Graeme Nicholson, Review of Metaphysics, LXV, September 2011.

"Capobianco is delivering challenges to views widely held by prominent Heidegger experts, and he does so with impeccable scholarship and remarkable lucidity and simplicity, qualities rare in writing on this philosopher."(Richard Velkley, Research in Phenomenology, 41, 2011)

From the Author

Richard Capobianco is Professor and Chair in the Philosophy department at Stonehill College. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Series: New Studies in Phenomenology and Hermeneutics
  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division (April 24, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1442641592
  • ISBN-13: 978-1442641594
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.7 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,270,202 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By Barry N. Bishop on December 27, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is a discussion, in eight essays, of several key issues in Heidegger's thinking. It is an excellent analysis of these issues although it is not a "front door" to Heidegger--it is not an introduction to the thinker because it assumes prior familiarity with his writing, with some of these issues, with Greek, and perhaps with German. I have enough of most of them to appreciate what the book offers, and I have learned enough German vocabulary not to be lost in the complex etymologies and comparisons. The book does advance significantly the study of one of the Twentieth Century's most important philosophical figures.

A primary issue addressed in perhaps most of the essays concerns Heidegger's famous "Kehre" or turn: the question whether or not he changed his mind and the direction of his thinking over the course of his career. The first two essays, on Being and Ereignis (appropriation or enownment) respectively, seem to answer that umbrella issue in the negative. Capobianco makes what appears to be a very good case, with citations from different of Heidegger's texts, that Being itself remains the one over-arching concern from perhaps before the writing of "Being and Time" and throughout his career. Ereignes, a term introduced later than "Being and Time", is argued to be "(only) another name for Being itself". And Being, however it is spoken of, remains the fundamental matter for thought.

However beyond the first couple of essays a "turn" is discerned in the "mood" of Dasein in the world. Early in his career, Heidegger analyzes Dasein as "not-at-home" in the world, as immersed in Angst, anxiety, when confronting its being in the world authentically.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a book for anyone interested in Heidegger, phenomenology and/or Continental Philosophy. Capobianco offers a refreshing (and accurate) perspective to the litter of Heideggerian work focusing, for some reason, on the grim, anxiety-ridden, finite, wounded, etc. individual existing subject. While Heidegger, of course, does outline some of these facets of Dasein (the human kind of being), they are certainly not the centerpiece of his work, nor do they occupy most of Heidegger's attention. Heidegger's thinking is a sustained reverie, reflection, meditation upon Being and our relationship to Being. Capobianco reflects the whole of Heidegger's work and makes it accessible -- no small feat.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Engaging Heidegger is a must read for any student or scholar interested in Martin Heidegger. There is something here for many readers, from advanced scholars of Phenomenology and Hermeneutics to those simply interested in architecture; for those interested in contemporary philosophy to students of psychology.

The Foreward was written by Boston College professor William J. Richardson, who for decades has been the recognized authority on Heidegger.

Over eight chapters, Professor Capobianco lucidly describes the nature and experience of Being in its various manifestations. Capobianco understands the complexity of Being and carefully and perceptively, through text and context, leads the reader to an understanding of Being as the time and space flow of all beings.

Analysis is driven by the examination of Heidegger's writings and lectures and a thorough knowledge of the original German with insightful translations. At times, the analysis focuses on specific words and the context within which those words were used, to delineate Heidegger's intended meanings. Other times, Capobianco indicates that Heidegger himself conveyed different meanings for particular key words over the course of his life of thought, such as with the term die Lichtung.

Perhaps most importantly, Capobianco elucidates the concept of ontological "anxiety" which further advances the idea of our authentic unsettledness in living and being in the world. Anxiety is a multi-faceted concept with elements of fear, dread, wonder, perplexity and perhaps even acceptance. "Angst" is problematic because it is not simply dread and Capobianco engages the Heideggarian commentariat to demonstrate the difference.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Richard Capobianco's 'text' (highest compliment for 'book') "Engaging Heidegger is both 'delight' and extremely thought provoking. A putative defense of Heidegger's use of the concept of Being/Beyng to organize the entirety of his (Heidegger's) oeuvre, it proves so much more. It is, among other things, a thoughtful excursus across the entirety of the Heideggerian oeuvre such that it could be used as a propaedeutic, and it should have as much interest for the professional scholar as it did for me, a 'professional' novitiate. There just is something for everyone. Anyone struggling to come to grips with the difficult work of Heidegger could do worse than to start here. Up front, Capobianco provides a schema of most, if not all, of the names that Heidegger used to 'indicate' Being/Beyng along with the Greek counterparts and English translations. 'It' of itself is worth the price of admission but it proves only to be the icing on Capobianco's idiomatic thinking that just is 'syncretic.' Capobianco brings Heidegger to a definition of Being/Beyng in his own syncretic way and that definition is just worth contemplating, worth subjecting to the silence of 'a' thinking. Buy this book!
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