Heidegger, ‘The Question Concerning the Thing’ lecture course – new translation forthcoming in September 2018

Martin Heidegger’s Die Frage nach dem Ding was one of the courses he published in his lifetime (in 1962), and then was later included in the Gesamtausgabe. There was an English translation as What is a Thing? in 1967, but that’s long been out of print. (This should not be confused with the 1949 lecture ‘The Thing’). A new translation by James D. Reid, and Benjamin D. Crowe is forthcoming in September 2018 with Rowman and Littlefield International as The Question Concerning the Thing: On Kants Doctrine of the Transcendental Principles.

The Question Concerning the Thing presents a full English translation of a lecture course first delivered by Heidegger at Freiburg University during the Winter Semester of 1935-36 (originally published in German as volume 41 of the Gesamtausgabe).

The text presents with particular clarity Heidegger’s distinctive approach to issues of general philosophical interest. Heidegger shows how a litany of classical metaphysical problems flow from the basic question ‘what is a thing?’, revealing the historicity of these problems and, thus, the ways in which they implicate further issues of cultural significance. He examines issues regarding the history and philosophy of science, philosophy of language, and logic that are still debated today. Moreover, the lecture course as a whole is framed by questions regarding the nature of philosophy itself. Along the way, Heidegger provides sensitive and often provocative discussions of historically significant figures, in particular Kant.

It’s a long time since I’ve worked on Heidegger, but this course was important both for Mapping the Present and especially Speaking Against Number, as it has discussion of space, modern science, calculation, measure and mathematics as well as the themes mentioned above.

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