For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

Logic as the Question Concerning the Essence of Language

by Heidegger, Martin (2009)


This first English translation of Logik als die Frage nach dem Wesen der Sprache, volume 38 of Martin Heidegger’s Gesamtausgabe, contains novel ideas on logic and language that are important for anyone wishing to think beyond traditional views of these topics. Based on student transcripts of Heidegger’s lectures and manuscripts for a 1934 summer course, the work contains his first public reflection on the nature of language itself. Given shortly after Heidegger’s resignation to the rectorship of the University of Freiburg, the course also opens up fresh perspectives on his controversial involvement with the Nazi regime. Heidegger’s critical probing of logic involves metaphysics and poetry and intertwines essential questions concerning language as a world-forming power, the human being, history, and time. This work marks a milestone in Heidegger’s path of thinking as his first meditation on language as a primal event of being.

Key Passage

[Extract from § 14. Reply to the first interposed question: What is that, a Volk?]- We came on this way, however, only to see the We, in a manner of speaking, from outside-as an assembly of individual human beings. We tried then another way, namely, from out of the moment. We said: We are here, admitted into the happening of education of this university and, with this, fitted into the vocation, which we willed with its professional tasks, [and] with this, fitted into the order and the willing of a State. We are here, fitted into this happening today, we are here in the belongingness to this Volk, we are this Volk itself. -[Note: Significant emphasis removed from original] (p.55)


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


Logic as the Question [1934], Heidegger Citations

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