Heidegger and Hegel: The Time of Life & The Time of Life-Philosophy

Parrhesia 15:24-34 (2012)
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In this paper I analyze Hegel’s concept of life in the Phenomenology of Spirit and Heidegger’s critical comments regarding this concept of life in his 1930/31 Lecture Course on Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit. I claim that Heidegger's lecture course shows his continued fascination with life, despite his official distance to Dilthey and the then contemporary life-philosophy. I argue that one of the fundamental tenets of life-philosophy, the opposition of "life" to "reason," still motivates Heidegger’s critique of Hegel’s supposedly logocentric concept of life. I begin the paper with a brief review of Heidegger’s life-philosophical starting point after World War One (Section I)and, drawing on Hans Jonas, suggest some meta-reflections on the reasons behind the renewed interest in "life" in the last decades of the nineteenth and the first decades of the twentieth century (section II). After a sketch of Hegel’s concept of life in the Phenomenology of Spirit (Section III), I then turn to Heidegger’s interpretation of Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit in 1930/31 (Section IV), in particular Hegel’s conception of the correlation of life and time



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Ingo Farin
University of Tasmania

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