Heidegger Otherwise: In Search of a Good Beyond Being in Heidegger

Phenomenological 31:111-129 (2007)

Authors
Drew Dalton
Dominican University
Abstract
The Levinasian critique of Heidegger is well know: Heidegger’s phenomenological investigation into the nature of beings, employed towards the end of catching a glimpse of the Being behind those beings, though undeniably rich, is nevertheless fundamentally limited as it fails to allow for anything “beyond being,” anything outside the sway of presence, like, for Levinas, an ultimate Good. In recognition of this limitation, Levinas attempts to expand the Heideggerian project by accounting in his own work for those phenomena which seem to indicate a Good “beyond being” at work within existence, phenomenon such as shame, Eros and fecundity. While intriguing, is Levinas’ critique of Heidegger accurate? Is it true that Heidegger excludes anything resembling a Good beyond being in his work? It is the aim of this paper to examine these questions and by exposing a hitherto unrecognized element within Heidegger’s thought and in doing so calling into question and clarifying Levinas’ criticisms of Heidegger.
Keywords Being  Heidegger  Levinas  Ethics  The Good
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