Martin Heidegger, 1889 - 1976

“Do we in our time have an answer to the question of what we really mean by the word ‘being’? Not at all. So it is fitting that we should raise anew the question of the meaning of Being. But are we nowadays even perplexed at our inability to understand the expression ‘Being’? Not at all. So first of all we must reawaken an understanding for the meaning of this question.”


Martin Heidegger was born in Messkirch, Germany in 1889, attended schools in the area, and for a short time considered becoming a priest. But he turned instead to philosophical studies, primarily at the university in Freiburg, near his home town. He married Elfride Petri in 1917, and they reared two sons. [Read More]


Martin Heidegger’s work is difficult because of its novelty and complexity. A summary can point to several basic phenomena he discusses, but one inevitably first understands these phenomena in ways that Heidegger does not intend. There can be no substitute for confronting his works directly. Heidegger is arguably the foremost philosopher of the twentieth century and surely the foremost in the continental or European tradition. [Read More]

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Claremont McKenna professor political philosophy Mark Blitz discusses the thought of Martin Heidegger.