Re: Re[2]: ethics and poststructuralism

On Sun, 21 Jan 1996, Bryan Palmer wrote:

> Second, surely poststructuralism could be equally critiqued in this same
> manner of historical abuse. Heidegger's intellectual contribution to
> Foucault, Derrida and Lacan has been noted by a number of authors.
> According to Keith Windschuttle (1994) in _The Killing of History_, "While
> Foucault and Derrida thought his [Heidegger's] work pointed in radical
> directions, Heidegger himself continued to believe until his death in 1976
> that his philosphy confirmed the 'inner truth and greatness' of the nazi
> movement." (p12). While I am not a pursuaded that poststructuralism is
> "wrong" because a former proto-poststructuralist had some wacky ideas, I am
> also cautous about throughing every aspect of humanism out because of past
> abuses.
> _______________________________________________________________
> Bryan Palmer

Call me an academic pedant if you will, but this is shoddy bit of work
form the outset. Just how is it that this Windschuttle character has
access to Heidegger's beliefs? Its one thing to refer to the things that
someone has written, or to the things that they have said which have been
recorded, but to get inside the head of a dead man such that you know
what he believed is taking the whole notion of thinking the unthought
just one step to far. Of those things which he said and that have been
recorded it seems fairly safe to say that Heidegger never renounced those
thoughts which lead him to embrace national socialism. However, there is
a subtle and very significant difference between saying this and saying
that he believed in and wanted to confirm the 'inner strength and
greatness' of the Nazi party.

At this point things may be to far gone to be rescued, but let me stress
that I'm not trying to make a point about Nazism here. Rather I'm just
trying to make a point about the difference between belief, dogma and
truth and their attributions to a particular thinker. In the temporality
that functions around here there is an old anecdote that the relevance of
discussion on email lists is inversly proportional to the entrance of
Nazi's as a topic. So lets try not to go that route, shall we?



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