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Heidegger And Nazism Paperback – February 28, 1991

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Farias, a Chilean exile in Germany and sometime student of Heidegger, provides a fascinating journey into the life and times of one of the century's preeminent philosophers. In addition to the biographical detail, there is an in-depth examination of a wide range of Heidegger's writings; the gamut runs from his early work on the anti-Semitic monk Abraham a Sancta Clara, through his famous address as rector of the University of Freiburg in 1933, to a posthumously published interview. This extensively researched work makes a good case that Heidegger's association with and adherence to Nazism was much greater than is generally recognized. How this affected his philosophy proper is a topic that can, should, and undoubtedly will be debated as a result of this important, controversial book.
-Leon H. Brody, U.S. Office of Personnel Management Lib., Washington, D.C.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"[Farias'] book includes more concrete information relevant to Heidegger's relations with the Nazis than anything else available, and it is an excellent antidote to the evasive apologetics that are still being published." --Richard Rorty, The New Republic "Fascinating material for a study of a philosopher who would seem to have cooperated eagerly with the false promises of tyranny." --Allen Lacy, The New York Times Book Review "A major work in the controversy over Heidegger's connection with Nazism... it also offers a fascinating look into the academic world of Hitler's Germany." --Choice "The most serious and pointed inquiry ever made of the political activities of Heidegger... One thing is certain...one can never again, after Farias' book, approach Heidegger as we did before... How [has] all modern thought...been able to make the most important philosophy of the century from a philosophy which did not utter a word about genocide? Heidegger, a Nazi? Without doubt." --Robert Maggiori, Liberation "Farias has demonstrated that [Heidegger's] political engagement was even deeper and more enduring than had previously been suspected." --The Times Literary Supplement "The significant achievement of Farias' Heidegger and Nazism is that it established beyond doubt Heidegger's commitment to Nazism and his involvement in the activities of the Nazi regime; it establishes also that the connection between Heidegger's philosophy and Nazism is essential and that it constitutes an inescapable project for further philosophic research." --The Washington Post
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 349 pages
  • Publisher: Temple University Press; Reprint edition (February 28, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0877228302
  • ISBN-13: 978-0877228301
  • Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 1 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #106,025 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Steven H Propp TOP 100 REVIEWER on February 9, 2015
Format: Hardcover
Victor Farias is a Chilean scholar who taught in the Latin American Institute at the Free University of Berlin, West Germany until 2006. He has written other books such as Die Nazis in Chile, Salvador Allende Antisemitismo y Eutanasia, etc.

He wrote in the Introduction to this 1987 book, "My central thesis is the following: When Heidegger decided to join the National Socialist party, he was following an already-prepared path whose beginnings we find in the Austrian movement of Christian Socialism, with its conservatism and anti-semitism, and the attitudes he had found in his native region... Heidegger's decision to join the NSDAP was in no way the result of unexpected opportunism or tactical considerations. The decision was clearly linked with his already having acted in a say consonant with National Socialism prior to becoming rector of the University of Freiburg and with his actual political practices as rector and member of the party... Heidegger was politically active within a faction of the party that during the years 1933-1934 was trying to take power and lead the movement... In Heidegger's eyes it was not the movement but the National Socialist leaders who had taken positions of authority who had abandoned the truly Nazi ideas... Martin Heidegger never broke the organic links tying him to the National Socialist Party... he remained an active member until the end of the war, continuing to pay his dues, and that he was never subject to discipline nor internal political trials within the party." (Pg.
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Format: Hardcover
Victor Farias is a Chilean scholar who taught in the Latin American Institute at the Free University of Berlin, West Germany until 2006. He has written other books such as Die Nazis in Chile, Salvador Allende Antisemitismo y Eutanasia, etc.

He wrote in the Introduction to this 1987 book, “My central thesis is the following: When Heidegger decided to join the National Socialist party, he was following an already-prepared path whose beginnings we find in the Austrian movement of Christian Socialism, with its conservatism and anti-semitism, and the attitudes he had found in his native region… Heidegger’s decision to join the NSDAP was in no way the result of unexpected opportunism or tactical considerations. The decision was clearly linked with his already having acted in a say consonant with National Socialism prior to becoming rector of the University of Freiburg and with his actual political practices as rector and member of the party… Heidegger was politically active within a faction of the party that during the years 1933-1934 was trying to take power and lead the movement… In Heidegger’s eyes it was not the movement but the National Socialist leaders who had taken positions of authority who had abandoned the truly Nazi ideas… Martin Heidegger never broke the organic links tying him to the National Socialist Party… he remained an active member until the end of the war, continuing to pay his dues, and that he was never subject to discipline nor internal political trials within the party.” (Pg.
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Format: Paperback
There is little doubt that Martin Heidegger was a significant figure in modern philosophy. His text Being and Time (1927) had a major impact on many theorists and philosophers who followed him; Georg Gadamer, Jean-Paul Sartre, Jacques Derrida, to name but a few. But there is equally no doubt that for at least a dozen years, Heidegger allied himself to a totalitarian regime that was rooted in racism, prejudice, and genocide. It becomes no easy task to determine how or even whether one can separate that part of his work that is untainted by Nazi ideology and that part which is so tainted. Indeed, a larger question inevitably arises: Is it possible or even desirable to salvage any of his work? In Heidegger and Nazism, Victor Farias argues that it is not.

When critics attempt to separate what a theorist thinks from what he writes, they face a thicket of issues that resist a quick resolution. In Martin Heidegger's case, we are not discussing abstract issues of morality such as his views on abortion, animal rights, or same-sex marriage, however significant they are. Rather, we are talking about a philosophy of life that demands a sentence of death on those whose only crime is due to their birth. Adolph Hitler, first Reich Chancellor then Führer of Nazi Germany, based his racial theories on the belief that the German Volk was genetically superior to all others. He surrounded his call to racial purity with an image rooted in Blood and Soil. Hitler's own book Mein Kampf made it clear that there was no difference between what he wrote and what he thought. But what of Martin Heidegger, a thinker of supreme originality whose theories may have little to do with his political ideology? A comparison with a similarly controversial figure may shed light on a resolution.
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