For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

The Heidegger controversy: A critical reader

by Heidegger, Martin; Wolin, Richard (1992)


This anthology is a significant contribution to the debate over the relevance of Martin Heidegger's Nazi ties to the interpretation and evaluation of his philosophical work. Included are a selection of basic documents by Heidegger, essays and letters by Heidegger's colleagues that offer contemporary context and testimony, and interpretive evaluations by Heidegger's heirs and critics in France and Germany.In his new introduction, "Note on a Missing Text," Richard Wolin uses the absence from this edition of an interview with Jacques Derrida as a springboard for examining questions about the nature of authorship and personal responsibility that are at the heart of the book.Richard Wolin is Professor of Modern European Intellectual History and Humanities at Rice University. He is the author of Walter Benjamin, The Politics of Being: The Political Thought of Martin Heidegger, and The Terms of Cultural Criticism: The Frankfurt School, Existentialism and Poststructuralism.

Key Passage

[Excerpt from National Socialist Education (January 22, 1934)]-The creation of work must, first of all, make the unemployed and jobless Volksgenosse again capable of existing [daseinsfiihig] in the State and for the State and thereby capable of existing for the Volk as a  whole. [...] Everyone of our Volk who is employed must know for what reason and to what purpose he is where he is. lt is only through this living and ever-present knowledge that his life will be rooted in the Volk as a  whole, and in its destiny. Providing this knowledge is  thus a necessary part of the creation of work; and it is your right, but therefore also your obligation, to demand this knowledge and to endeavor to acquire it. (p.56)


Heidegger, Germany, National Socialism, Nazi, Twentieth Century, National Socialist Education, Academia, Duty, Work Creation


National Socialist Education [1934], Heidegger Citations

Links to Reference



How to contribute.