Title

Language Speaks: Heidegger's Understanding of Language

Document Type

Thesis

Publication Date

1997

Advisor

Rene McGraw

Abstract

The central task of my thesis, entitled "Language Speaks: Heidegger on Language," is to bring to light an understanding of language found in the philosophy of Martin Heidegger (18898-1976). This understanding was rendered by a textual exegesis of three difficult texts from Heidegger's corpus: Being and Time (1929), "On the Essence of Truth" (1930), and "Hoelderlin and the Essence of Poetry" (1936). The reading of Being and Time (up to section 34) provided the grounding for the discussions on truth and language by situating Heidegger with regard to the problem of Being an language, articulating Heidegger's foundational thought, and identifying key concepts and terminology. The distilled results of my exegetical work are: Being and Time shows Being as the process of coming to presence (or, as 'presencing'); "On the Essence of Truth" shows truth as the process of concealment/unconcealment (or aletheia); "Hoelderlin and the Essence of Poetry" shows language as that through which beings come to unconcealment. In the final analysis, we come to understand that the origination of truth is the process of language as Saying (i.e., as poetry)--language answers the "how" of coming to presence (Being), of coming to unconcealment (truth).

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