Post-Kantian European Philosophy Seminar (Thursday - Week 8, HT23)

Post-Kantian European Philosophy Seminar

My paper concerns a particular kind of impulsiveness under investigation in the thought of both Martin Heidegger and Ludwig Wittgenstein.  The impulsiveness in question concerns realism and idealism:  impulses not just toward each of these views, but away from them as well.   The presence of these impulses in opposite – and perhaps not entirely equal – directions creates a kind of dramatic tension in both Heidegger’s and Wittgenstein’s respective philosophies, as each appears drawn both toward – and away from – the two incompatible positions, which is apt to leave readers wondering just which impulse is really to be resisted and which to be indulged, and whether, moreover, the entitlement to that indulgence has been earned.  I start with several of Heidegger’s remarks from Being and Time and surrounding lectures that articulate impulses toward both realism and idealism, as well as those that recoil from them.  Heidegger’s remarks serve as a kind of template – or a set of guidelines – for approaching some very rough but intriguing remarks from Wittgenstein’s manuscripts in the early to mid-1930s.  My primary concern is to make sense of these remarks in order to locate what might be called – following Cavell’s talk in The Claim of Reason of “the truth in skepticism” – the truth in realism and the truth in idealism, neither of which amounts to holding that either view is true.
Post-Kantian European Philosophy Seminar Convenors: Joseph SchearManuel Dries, and Mark Wrathall