For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

On Hegel's Philosophy of Right: The 1934-35 Seminar and Interpretive Essays

by Heidegger, Martin (2014)


This is the first English translation of the seminar Martin Heidegger gave during the Winter of 1934-35, which dealt with Hegel's Philosophy of Right. This remarkable text is the only one in which Heidegger interprets Hegel's masterpiece in the tradition of Continental political philosophy while offering a glimpse into Heidegger's own political thought following his engagement with Nazism. It also confronts the ideas of Carl Schmitt, allowing readers to reconstruct the relation between politics and ontology. The book is enriched by a collection of interpretations of the seminar, written by select European and North American political thinkers and philosophers. Their essays aim to make the seminar accessible to students of political theory and philosophy, as well as to open new directions for debating the relation between the two disciplines. A unique contribution, this volume makes available key lectures by Heidegger that will interest a wide readership of students and scholars.

Key Passage

Probably the most important sketch for a political philosophy in the context of the seminar on Hegel’s Philosophy of Right is the one that goes under the heading “Th e Metaphysical Basic Power of the Future State” (162). Here, care as a political existential is derived from the “struggle,” i.e. from π ο´ λεμος . Care is then analyzed into four elements. At fi rst, it appears as “mastery.” This “mastery” isseized and wielded by the “ones who care.” Th e end of care is “to ‘guard’ [ wahren ]beings.” Th e second element of care is “work.” Under this determination, we couldfind a response to Jünger’s ideas about the “worker.” For Heidegger, care is the fi rstintention of work. In its third element, care appears as “truth,” which realizes itselfin “nature – soil – blood – homeland – landscape – Gods – death.” Finally, care is “finitude”, in which the “fi ssure” [ Zerklüft ung ] of Being, i.e. the modality in its temporal distinctions, is present. (p.16)


Heidegger, Hegel, Schmitt, Junger, Twentieth Century, National Socialism, Continental Philosophy, Political Theory, Philosophy Of Right


On Heidegger

Links to Reference



How to contribute.