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Poetry, Language, Thought collects Martin Heidegger's pivotal writings on art, its role in human life and culture, and its relationship to thinking and truth. Essential reading for students and anyone interested in the great philosophers, this book opens up appreciation of Heidegger beyond the study of philosophy to the reaches of poetry and our fundamental relationship to Poetry, Language, Thought collects Martin Heidegger's pivotal writings on art, its role in human life and culture, and its relationship to thinking and truth. Essential reading for students and anyone interested in the great philosophers, this book opens up appreciation of Heidegger beyond the study of philosophy to the reaches of poetry and our fundamental relationship to the world. Featuring "The Origin of the Work of Art," a milestone in Heidegger's canon, this enduring volume provides potent, accessible entry to one of the most brilliant thinkers of modern times.


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Poetry, Language, Thought collects Martin Heidegger's pivotal writings on art, its role in human life and culture, and its relationship to thinking and truth. Essential reading for students and anyone interested in the great philosophers, this book opens up appreciation of Heidegger beyond the study of philosophy to the reaches of poetry and our fundamental relationship to Poetry, Language, Thought collects Martin Heidegger's pivotal writings on art, its role in human life and culture, and its relationship to thinking and truth. Essential reading for students and anyone interested in the great philosophers, this book opens up appreciation of Heidegger beyond the study of philosophy to the reaches of poetry and our fundamental relationship to the world. Featuring "The Origin of the Work of Art," a milestone in Heidegger's canon, this enduring volume provides potent, accessible entry to one of the most brilliant thinkers of modern times.

30 review for Poetry, Language, Thought

  1. 5 out of 5

    Glenn Russell

    Seven essays on poetry and the arts from German philosopher Martin Heidegger (1889-1976) are collected here, including his key work on aesthetics, The Origin of a Work of Art. However, for the purposes of this review I will focus on his less well-known essay, What Are Poets For?” Here are several direct Heidegger quotes followed by my micro-fiction serving as a tribute to what I take to be much of the spirit of this essay: “Being, which holds all beings in the balance, thus always draws particula Seven essays on poetry and the arts from German philosopher Martin Heidegger (1889-1976) are collected here, including his key work on aesthetics, The Origin of a Work of Art. However, for the purposes of this review I will focus on his less well-known essay, What Are Poets For?” Here are several direct Heidegger quotes followed by my micro-fiction serving as a tribute to what I take to be much of the spirit of this essay: “Being, which holds all beings in the balance, thus always draws particular beings toward itself – toward itself at the center.” “Everything that is ventured is, as such and such a being, admitted into the whole of beings, and reposes in the ground of the whole.” “The widest orbit of beings becomes present in the heart’s inner space. The whole of the world achieves here an equally essential presence in all its drawings.” “The objectness of the world remains reckoned in that manner of representation which deals with time and space as quanta of calculation, and which can know no more of the nature of time than of the nature of space.” “The conversion of consciousness is an inner recalling of the immanence of the objects of representation into presence within the heart’s space.” ------------------- THE POETRY BAR Thirsty, I enter a bar that’s dark, smoky and crowded, squeeze through and perch on a bar stool at the end closest the door, cross my arms on the counter and scan the faces of those around me. Many of the people are reading from sheets of paper, some reading silently, some muttering words aloud and still others reading to one another. The bartender approaches and asks me what I want, to which I, in turn, ask what he has on tap. The bartender replies, “Most anything – Byron, Blake, Stevens, Frost, Browning, William Carlos Williams, you name it.” So, it’s poetry rather than beer. I’m still thirsty but at least for now I tell him that I’ll take a Frost. The bartender obliges by handing me a copy of ‘Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening’. I read the first stanza quickly then take my time reading the next three. I pause and look over at one of the crowded booths: six men with beards and black T-shirts are huddled together listening as their leader reads aloud from what I recognized as Alan Ginsburg’s ‘Howl’. The bartender was right – they do have most everything here. I bend my head and begin to reread the first stanza of Frost when I hear great sobs from across the bar. A man with a ruddy complexion and a Scottish brogue is trying to recite Robert Burns but is having trouble because he keeps breaking down and crying. Another patron knocks roughly against me and then staggers through the door. Looking out the large front window I watch as he crosses the street, oblivious to cars and busses, as if lifted out of himself by an otherworldly ecstasy. The bartender taps me on the elbow. When I turn he nods knowingly and tells me he always tries his best to keep an eye on anyone overdoing it.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Ahmad Sharabiani

    Poetry, Language, Thought, Martin Heidegger Essential reading for students and anyone interested in the great philosophers, this book opened up appreciation of Martin Heidegger beyond the confines of philosophy to the reaches of poetry. In Heidegger's thinking, poetry is not a mere amusement or form of culture but a force that opens up the realm of truth and brings man to the measure of his being and his world. تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز دوازدهم ماه ژوئن سال 2003میلادی عنوان: شعر، زبان و اندیشه‌ی رها Poetry, Language, Thought, Martin Heidegger Essential reading for students and anyone interested in the great philosophers, this book opened up appreciation of Martin Heidegger beyond the confines of philosophy to the reaches of poetry. In Heidegger's thinking, poetry is not a mere amusement or form of culture but a force that opens up the realm of truth and brings man to the measure of his being and his world. تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز دوازدهم ماه ژوئن سال 2003میلادی عنوان: شعر، زبان و اندیشه‌ی رهایی - هفت مقاله از مارتین هایدگر همراه با زندگی تصویری هایدگر؛ نویسنده مارتین هایدگر؛ مترجم عباس منوچهری؛ مشخصات نشر: تهران، مولی، 1381، در نود و چهار، 265ص، مصور، شابک 9645996503؛ چاپ دوم 1389؛ شابک 9789645996503؛ موضوغ: نقد و تفسیر، زبانشناسی، شعر، فلسفه - سده 20م فهرست مقالات: «1- عمارت، سکونت، فکرت»؛ «2- چیز»؛ «3- انسان شاعرانه سکنی میکند»؛ «4- زبان»؛ «5- منشا اثر هنری»؛ «6- چرا شاعران؟»؛ «7- متفکر چونان شاعر.»؛ کتاب «شعر، زبان و اندیشه رهایی»، اثری نگاشته ی فیلسوف بزرگ آلمانی: «مارتین هایدگر» است، که نخستین بار در سال 1971میلادی به چاپ رسید. این هفت مقاله (نگاره)، دربردارنده ی متون ارزشمند «هایدگر»، درباره ی: «هنر»، «نقش آن در زندگی انسان و فرهنگ»، و «رابطه اش با تفکر و حقیقت» است.؛ کتاب «شعر، زبان و اندیشه ی رهایی»، اثری برای کسانیست که به فیلسوفان بزرگ علاقمند هستند، و نشان میدهد که «هایدگر» را، علاوه بر تفکرات فلسفی بی نظیرش، باید به خاطر پرداختهای روشنگرانه اش نیز، درباره ی: «شعر»، «زبان» و «ارتباط بنیادین با جهان»، مورد تحسین و تمجید قرار داد.؛ این کتاب جاودان، برخی از «تأثیرگذارترین» و «جریان سازترین» مقالات «هایدگر» را، در خود جای داده، و پنجره ای رو به ذهن و اندیشه ی یکی از درخشانترین متفکرین عصر مدرن گشوده است تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 10/05/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jonfaith

    The nature of poetry, which has now been ascertained very broadly--but not on that account vaguely, may here be kept firmly in mind as something worthy of questioning, something that still has to be thought through. The above is lifted from The Origin of the Work of Art, the second piece and first essay of this bewildering collection. Overall Poetry, Language, Thought was the most difficult text I've finished since https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2... last summer. I read nearly every page fou The nature of poetry, which has now been ascertained very broadly--but not on that account vaguely, may here be kept firmly in mind as something worthy of questioning, something that still has to be thought through. The above is lifted from The Origin of the Work of Art, the second piece and first essay of this bewildering collection. Overall Poetry, Language, Thought was the most difficult text I've finished since https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2... last summer. I read nearly every page four times. I feel as if i know all the components by name and function but have lost the instruction manual. Thus I dither. The second essay What Are Poets For left my reason blinded, a darkened room where I could appreciate Holderlin but make no sense of anything further. Building Dwelling Thinking with the deliberate absence of commas was my favorite. Afterwards there is 1950 letter from Heidegger to a young student reprinted towards the end. He advises. Practice needs craft. Stay on the path, in genuine need, and learn the craft of thinking, unswerving, yet erring. Sage advice, this reader hopes to continue. Following Beckett I aspire to fail better.

  4. 5 out of 5

    vi macdonald

    Going back to this one, I'm realizing that a few years ago when I was first was getting into philosophy I had a deep insecurity about not having read enough; not being clever enough; feeling like I had to give credit to "significant" writers who I found frustrating to read, because there had to be a reason they're considered so important. As a result I gave a lot of philosophers the benefit of the doubt, and decided that if I found their ideas huge and hard to take in all at once, it probably me Going back to this one, I'm realizing that a few years ago when I was first was getting into philosophy I had a deep insecurity about not having read enough; not being clever enough; feeling like I had to give credit to "significant" writers who I found frustrating to read, because there had to be a reason they're considered so important. As a result I gave a lot of philosophers the benefit of the doubt, and decided that if I found their ideas huge and hard to take in all at once, it probably meant that I wasn't smart enough and just needed to try harder. Sometimes this was worth it, and further reading took me into some really worldview-shattering and exciting places (such as with Deleuze, Spinoza, and - with some reservations - Hegel). But sometimes... sometimes the philosopher in question is just Heidegger. Like, even if the guy wasn't a Nazi (which, to be clear, he absolutely was and I will fight you), he's actually just not that interesting. Also he's got weak-ass basic bitch taste in poetry.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Aran

    I hereby absolve myself of any guilt over not finishing this book.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Lily Patchett

    so many circles! i don't think i made it out of the maze. im still very lost. it was fun at times - like i was on the teacup ride (a little circle inside a larger circle), but then i'd start to feel nauseous and kinda wanna be on the ground again amongst others. other times it felt like i was a circle on a venn diagram that was not intersecting with heidegger's circle but then what about everyone who doesn't intersect with heidegger's circle>??!!!!! idk idk anyway im exhausting the circle metaph so many circles! i don't think i made it out of the maze. im still very lost. it was fun at times - like i was on the teacup ride (a little circle inside a larger circle), but then i'd start to feel nauseous and kinda wanna be on the ground again amongst others. other times it felt like i was a circle on a venn diagram that was not intersecting with heidegger's circle but then what about everyone who doesn't intersect with heidegger's circle>??!!!!! idk idk anyway im exhausting the circle metaphors. tbh my fav thing was heidegger's unadulterated fanboying over hölderlin <3 <3 <3 ;)

  7. 4 out of 5

    Brandy

    Absolutely one of Heidegger's best works. Initially, I read specific pieces (The Origin of the Work of Art, The Thing, and Language) from the book for a couple philosophy classes for my major; however, after doing so, I decided to read the book in its entirety. I'm glad I did. I suppose one can say they are truly on a philosophical journey if and when Heidegger becomes an enjoyable read. Absolutely one of Heidegger's best works. Initially, I read specific pieces (The Origin of the Work of Art, The Thing, and Language) from the book for a couple philosophy classes for my major; however, after doing so, I decided to read the book in its entirety. I'm glad I did. I suppose one can say they are truly on a philosophical journey if and when Heidegger becomes an enjoyable read.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Khashayar Mohammadi

    I loved this book immensely, but I have to admit I was rather disappointed to see that the segments dealing with Poetry, where not about the 'Philosophy OF Poetry', but rather 'Philosophy IN Poetry' I loved this book immensely, but I have to admit I was rather disappointed to see that the segments dealing with Poetry, where not about the 'Philosophy OF Poetry', but rather 'Philosophy IN Poetry'

  9. 5 out of 5

    তানজীম Rahman)

    I can respect a well-argued point, even if I don’t agree with it entirely. That is a principle I will apply to this book as well. Let me start off by saying that there are a number of ideas here that I think deserve more attention from me than a short review would allow. For this review, I will focus on one idea from PLT in particular: that of the tension between ‘earth’ and ‘world’. Very, very roughly: ‘earth’ is what Heidegger calls the parts of nature that are not understood explicitly by the I can respect a well-argued point, even if I don’t agree with it entirely. That is a principle I will apply to this book as well. Let me start off by saying that there are a number of ideas here that I think deserve more attention from me than a short review would allow. For this review, I will focus on one idea from PLT in particular: that of the tension between ‘earth’ and ‘world’. Very, very roughly: ‘earth’ is what Heidegger calls the parts of nature that are not understood explicitly by the human imagination (or mind, or intelligibility). ‘earth’ represents the abundant potential for meaning held by nature. ‘The world,’ on the other hand, is the structure of meaning that is agreed upon by a ‘historical people’. In other words, it can be thought of as the set of definitions that large parts of the world’s human population use to understand nature. The Artist’s (or The Great Artist’s) goal should be to look for ‘rifts’ or cracks in the ‘earth’, to sort of tease out the secrets of ‘earth’ and open up a new ‘world’ of meaning. Great Works of Art let us see the great tension between that which is hidden and that which is revealed. This definition of art is particularly interesting to me. I like the concept of having mystery as an integral part of art. But Heidegger also argues that the modern ‘Subject/object’ definition of art lacks completeness. The modern view basically says that art is essentially an object that a human subject projects meaning onto. I don’t entirely agree with him on this. And his analysis of the Van Gogh painting doesn’t make the matter clearer. Perhaps he also wanted to include a little mystery in his written work? Overall, a really engrossing book full of ambition and fresh ideas. I should note that I consulted Iain Thomson’s essay on Heidegger’s aesthetics as found on the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy while reading Poetry, Language, Thought. The essay is a fine read in its own right. Slashing one star because Heidegger was a Nazi bastard.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Erika Higbee

    While reading Stein’s Tender Buttons alongside Derrida’s Sign Structure, and Play, Heidegger’s Poetry, Language, Thought was a very appropriate text to continue studying the purpose of poetry— and the purpose of language and the individual word in general. The “Being,” “work-being” of the work, and various “origins” that Heidegger repeatedly makes reference to throughout the book again made me question the intangible “missing center,” “essence of the thing,” and the idea of approaching the word While reading Stein’s Tender Buttons alongside Derrida’s Sign Structure, and Play, Heidegger’s Poetry, Language, Thought was a very appropriate text to continue studying the purpose of poetry— and the purpose of language and the individual word in general. The “Being,” “work-being” of the work, and various “origins” that Heidegger repeatedly makes reference to throughout the book again made me question the intangible “missing center,” “essence of the thing,” and the idea of approaching the word “without any pre-conceptions.” The emphasis on letting the object be unaffected and that, instead of imposing oneself upon it, that one should “listen and hear” to it, is an interesting point particularly related to phenomenology. Modern linguistics and modernist writers frequently focus on such impossibilities, though often gesturing to some kind of hope. One can only imagine whether such non-preconceptual thinking and such regard to an essence— the nothingness that is always present as the determining force— will ever emerge clearly out of the text. That being said, I recommend this book as a learning guide to poetry and art! It definitely helps to read up on some phenomenology and linguistic models before reading this. I’m sure I barely grasped the surface of things. Not to mention, of course, one has to grapple with Heidegger’s Nazism. Though it is always a question whether one should separate work from author, his political beliefs definitely decreased my initial enthusiasm toward the text.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Marts (Thinker)

    Heidegger's exploration of the arts of human life and thinking... Heidegger's exploration of the arts of human life and thinking...

  12. 5 out of 5

    John Pistelli

    Despite the convenience of this popular collection introducing the thinker's aesthetics, to comment on Heidegger exposes us to the same embarrassment as essaying on Hegel—except that the 19th-century philosopher's obscurities were, at least to his own mind, the steam generated by a drive toward clarity so total it was blinding. His 20th-century successor, by contrast, pursues the incomprehensible as a goal in itself, a dark wooded refuge in a world of synthetic and ersatz bedazzlements. Though l Despite the convenience of this popular collection introducing the thinker's aesthetics, to comment on Heidegger exposes us to the same embarrassment as essaying on Hegel—except that the 19th-century philosopher's obscurities were, at least to his own mind, the steam generated by a drive toward clarity so total it was blinding. His 20th-century successor, by contrast, pursues the incomprehensible as a goal in itself, a dark wooded refuge in a world of synthetic and ersatz bedazzlements. Though largely humorless, Heidegger can produce sentences we might expect to find in his contemporary Gertrude Stein: "The jug presences as a thing. The jug is the jug as a thing." And not only such sentences, but a methodological defense of such sentences:Merely to say the same thing twice—language is language—how is that supposed to get us anywhere? But we do not want to get anywhere. We would like only, for once, to get to just where we are already.Like so many artists and thinkers of the early 20th century, Heidegger thinks we need to slow down in a world consumed by the efficiencies and transparencies of technological change. As in other contemporaries, not only Stein but also figures as temperamentally diverse as Eliot and Shklovsky, he accordingly uses language as an impediment, to make us aware of this medium of all thought and experience. For Heidegger, language is "the house of Being," the world-making capacity that sets us apart from plants and animals. Yet "world-making" suggests something too agential and Hegelian; Heidegger is a human exceptionalist, but not one who urges us toward further and further action, more and more dominion over earth. Rather, he believes we disclose what can be disclosed of the necessarily obscure earth by using language and art to create revelatory worlds within it: the temple in which the god resides is his example in this volume's key text, the 1935 essay, "The Origin of the Work of Art." There he distinguishes among things, equipment, and art. Things are worldly phenomena, of which equipment and art are subsets. Equipment designates items made for use, matter formed for a distinct human purpose—tools, in other words. The better they work, the less conscious one is of the matter so formed. Art, on the other hand, reveals the essence of the matter it's fashioned from, brings it into individual and collective consciousness:In fabricating equipment—e.g., an ax—stone is used, and used up. It disappears into usefulness. The material is all the better and more suitable the less it resists perishing into the equipmental being of the equipment. By contrast, the temple-work, in setting up a world, does not care for the material to disappear, but rather causes it to come forth for the very first time and to come into the Open of the world's work.Again we see an affinity with other modernists—even ones quite distant from Heidegger in sensibility, like Joyce—for whom the revelation of the form comprising what were once thought to be mimetic or functional representations seemed an urgent task in a mass-media landscape multiplying representations at a fantastic rate. Viewing truth not as a logical proposition but as "aletheia, the unconcealedness of beings," Heidegger prefers images far from the world of technology and commerce. Besides the Greek temple, his extols Van Gogh's painting of a peasant's shoes; to it he devotes an ekphrastic prose-poem reminiscent of Pater's reverie on the Mona Lisa:From the dark opening of the worn insides of the shoes the toilsome tread of the worker stares forth. In the stiffly rugged heaviness of the shoes there is the accumulated tenacity of her slow trudge through the far-spreading and ever-uniform furrows of the field swept by a raw wind. On the leather lie the dampness and richness of the soil. Under the soles slides the loneliness of the field-path as evening falls. In the shoes vibrates the silent call of the earth, its quiet gift of the ripening grain and its unexplained self-refusal in the fallow desolation of the wintry field. This equipment is pervaded by uncomplaining anxiety as to the certainty of bread, the wordless joy of having once more withstood want, the trembling before the impending childbed and shivering at the surrounding menace of death. This equipment belongs to the earth, and it is protected in the world of the peasant woman. From out of this protected belonging the equipment itself rises to its resting-within-itself.In the painting—indeed, in the peasant woman (cf. Woolf's beggar in Mrs. Dalloway)—world, generated by the art itself, and earth, as the art's subject matter and material substrate, come together. "Art is the setting to work of truth," he writes, whereas, by contrast, "science is not an original happening of truth," first, because science works only with truths already established by the artist, to whom it is alone given to unconceal beings, and, second, because science abets the anti-artistic reign of technology that makes modernity so spiritually impoverished. Looking at art trains us in a less assertive and acquisitive mentality: "to restrain all usual doing and prizing, knowing and looking, in order to stay within the truth that is happening in the work." This collection's other long essay, written immediately after World War II, "What Are Poets For?"—a question he takes from Hölderlin—answers its titular query:Poets are the mortals who, singing earnestly of the wine-god, sense the trace of the fugitive gods, stay on the gods' tracks, and so trace for their kindred mortals a way toward the turning.In what Heidegger follows Hölderlin in calling our "destitute time," the culprits who have beggared us are not only technology and commerce, but totalitarianism too (more about Heidegger's complicity therewith in a moment). "Modern science and the total state," he laments, driven by "self-assertive production," cause "[t]he earth and its atmosphere [to] become raw material. Man becomes human material, which is disposed of with a view toward its proposed goals."In self-assertive production, the humanness of man and thing thingness of things dissolve into the calculated market value of a market which not only spans the whole earth as a world market, but also, as the will to will, trades in the nature of Being and thus subjects all beings to the trade of a calculation that dominates most tenaciously in those areas where there is no need of numbers.The poets, "the sayers who more sayingly say," like the temple-builders and like Van Gogh among the artists, demonstrate a savingly divergent, anti-scientific, anti-commercial, anti-totalitarian sensibility:Their singing is turned away from all purposeful self-assertion. It is not a willing in the sense of desire. Their song does not solicit anything to be produced. In the song, the world's inner space concedes space within itself. The song of these singers is neither solicitation nor trade.This is all clear enough—and to me, in time more technologized than a writer in 1946 might have been able to imagine, almost entirely welcome—but most of the long essay, a gloss on a short poem of Rilke's that turns the poet's limpid mysticism into murky prose, is almost unreadably abstract:The sphericity of the unifying, and the unifying itself, have the character of unconcealing lightening, within which present beings can be present.If you say so! Yet the overall thesis can be recovered. Human exceptionality among living things both allows our techno-commercial rampage over the earth—what Heidegger joins Rilke in calling "Americanism"—and enables us, through art and language, to reveal without dominance or objectification the mysterious source, the mysterium tremendum, he portentously calls "Being" to receptively attentive and actively passive eyes. Humanity is both the disease and the cure; as Hölderlin writes, "But where there is danger, there grows / also what saves." Other essays in this collection are more opaque to me, particularly "Language," which defines language as what speaks rather than what is spoken and seems to anticipate Derrida (much talk of a word the translator spells as "dif-ferrence") in ways I find unclear, except that its diminution of human agency may anticipate where it does not actually influence today's censorious "words are violence" attitude. More revelatory is "The Thing," in which Heidegger seems to dissolve the differences among thing, equipment, and art that he'd maintained in the "Origin" essay. Here his example is a jug, surely a piece of equipment, yet one he defines by its sacramental function of pouring out for the feast in which the fourfold of "earth and sky, divinities and mortals dwell together all at once." He ends the essay with a list of similarly redemptive things, a list expansive in one way, yet (tellingly) restrictive in another: jug, bench, footbridge, plow, tree, pond, brook, hill, heron, roe, deer, horse, bull, mirror, clasp, book, picture, crown, cross. A beautiful list, a poem in itself, yet it was written in the middle of the 20th century, even though it harbors no item newer than the Middle Ages, newer even than antiquity. I have been comparing Heidegger to his fellow modernists, but here he differs even from those of a superficially similar ideological bent. Could he, like Pound, have seen "petals on a wet, black bough" in the Paris Metro? Could he, like Woolf, have detected a new sublime in an airplane skywriting a candy ad? Could he, like Joyce—well, no, he couldn't have, because Joyce was a city man, and a philo-Semite to boot. But I am not so interested in the doleful commonplace of our philosopher's Nazism. His preference for what's rooted in the earth—including "the historical destiny of a people," to quote one of this book's more troubling phrases—is enough to explain and to deplore his political dereliction. I find the fascist elements of his thought both obvious and, for my purposes, fairly detachable from his (to my mind) plainly worthwhile critique of imperial scientism and his valorization in its stead of a poetry that demands no such furious and total human activity. My preference for Joyce, for Woolf, even for fellow-fascist Pound is about something other than, if related to, Heidegger's recoil from modernity. Some of Heidegger's fellow philosophers deride him as not really a philosopher at all. Sam Dresser writes up his conflict with Rudolf Carnap, a thinker ambitious to dispel metaphysics with logic, who called Heidegger a "musician without musical ability." Without wishing to weigh in on the question of what is or isn't philosophy—like a conjugal quarrel in the next apartment over, it's blessedly none of my business—this particular insult is a direct hit. I don't know if Heidegger is a good or bad philosopher or a philosopher at all, and I don't understand much of what I read in this book, even though I also read George Steiner's Fontana Modern Masters entry on Heidegger, listened to illuminating lectures by John David Ebert and Michael Sugrue, and, for that matter, studied Heidegger years ago in two separate graduate courses (in English, not philosophy: a student from the philosophy department, an analytical emissary from the Vienna Circle, sat in the back of one of these seminars and confidently pronounced everything on the syllabus—Leibniz, Spinoza, Heidegger, Derrida—to be be nonsense and gibberish, much to the chagrin of our deconstructive professor). Whatever his status in philosophy, though, Heidegger seems to me to be a bad poet. The great poets reveal the mystery of Being by specifying objects and experiences that incarnate its refulgence; again, Pound needs only two lines and one metaphor to light up modern Paris and old Japan at once, and to change the subway rider's perception forever. Heidegger's pages of bizarre and repetitive abstraction, by contrast, light up very little. Here (except that it doesn't quite explain Pound's case in the same way) I am tempted to say the literary flaw and the political flaw become one. Averse to too many of the sights where a more receptive eye might have seen splendor—incognizant that "what saves" might actually have been growing in the last places he'd have thought to look for it: the street, the marketplace—he sought too severe a shelter, a darkness not pregnant with holy mystery but only fogged with the foul smoke of human sacrifice.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Luna

    This was a refreshing read. What I really like about Heidegger is his capacity to bring to the fore new definitions and to stick to them. Even though he is usually linked to Nazism, i think that people tend to forget that behind that name also lies a whole heritage of philosophy whose aim id to detect truth where we do not usually see it. But what I find a bit off is that Heidegger has been so obsessed with Being that maybe it dragged his thinking down. I know that the core of his philosophy hov This was a refreshing read. What I really like about Heidegger is his capacity to bring to the fore new definitions and to stick to them. Even though he is usually linked to Nazism, i think that people tend to forget that behind that name also lies a whole heritage of philosophy whose aim id to detect truth where we do not usually see it. But what I find a bit off is that Heidegger has been so obsessed with Being that maybe it dragged his thinking down. I know that the core of his philosophy hovers around Being, but if he put Being withing a phenomenological sphere rather a transcendental one, maybe then he wouldnt have lost himself in a blind quest whose aim is to find a Being not accessible to us. Still these essays have much to say. And I recommand this book to anyone who dares question the norms.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Lesliemae

    Intense. It took no less than 2.5 months to read this thin volume of lectures. As a recommendation, do not, as I did not, read this book in order (I heeded the suggestion of another scholar and thank my lucky stars). I think this seemingly disorganized method made all the difference in reading this work. I started with "The Thing" read along with Buddhist thought (namely the Boddhisatva), "Building Dwelling Thinking" along with architectural theory aligned with Heidegger, "...poetically, Man dwe Intense. It took no less than 2.5 months to read this thin volume of lectures. As a recommendation, do not, as I did not, read this book in order (I heeded the suggestion of another scholar and thank my lucky stars). I think this seemingly disorganized method made all the difference in reading this work. I started with "The Thing" read along with Buddhist thought (namely the Boddhisatva), "Building Dwelling Thinking" along with architectural theory aligned with Heidegger, "...poetically, Man dwells...", "What are Poet's For?", "Language", then "The Origin of the Work if Art" with the Stanford Encyclopedia's entry on Heidegger and Aesthetics. After all that I was ready to approach "The Thinker as Poet" with something more than crazy-making confusion. This is my first approach to Heidegger.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Mr.

    Hofstader's capable translation of these extraordinary Heidegger essays makes this one of the indispensable books of 20th century philosophy. This collection is especially indicative of Heidegger's 'turn' to art and poetry, particularly in his amazingly complex 'Origin of the Work of Art' and 'Poetically, Man Dwells.' 'The Thing' is also a remarkable essay in Heidegger's descriptions of the closing of distances in modernity, as well as his phenomenological observations of the relation between th Hofstader's capable translation of these extraordinary Heidegger essays makes this one of the indispensable books of 20th century philosophy. This collection is especially indicative of Heidegger's 'turn' to art and poetry, particularly in his amazingly complex 'Origin of the Work of Art' and 'Poetically, Man Dwells.' 'The Thing' is also a remarkable essay in Heidegger's descriptions of the closing of distances in modernity, as well as his phenomenological observations of the relation between things and world. This is an excellent representation of Heidegger's philosophy of Language, and Hofstader has translated them quite well, even if the translations of Holderlin are a bit too cautious.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Jerry

    p. 140 (about Rilke’s “Sonnets for Orpheus”) Those who are more daring by a breath dare the venture with language. They are the sayers who more sayingly say. The converting inner recalling is the daring that dares to venture forth from the nature of many because man has language and is he who says. [could just as well be “Because man has language and is who he says.”] p. 165 All distances in time and space are shrinking… Yet the frantic abolition of all distances brings no nearness… what is happening p. 140 (about Rilke’s “Sonnets for Orpheus”) Those who are more daring by a breath dare the venture with language. They are the sayers who more sayingly say. The converting inner recalling is the daring that dares to venture forth from the nature of many because man has language and is he who says. [could just as well be “Because man has language and is who he says.”] p. 165 All distances in time and space are shrinking… Yet the frantic abolition of all distances brings no nearness… what is happening here when… everything is equally far and equally near?… Man stares at what the explosion of the atom bomb could bring with it. He does not see that the atom bomb and its explosion are the mere final emission of what has long since taken place. [because he pulled the switch long ago] p. 170 …considered scientifically, to fill a jug means to exchange one filling for another. Science’s knowledge, which is compelling within its own sphere, already had annihilated things as things long before the atom bomb exploded. p. 177 The distanceless prevails. p. 178 To die means to be capable of death as death. Only man dies. The animal perishes. p. 160 The nature of building is letting dwell. In the Black Forest, the coffin is “the tree of the dead.”—“Totenbaum” p. 161 However hard and bitter, however hampering and threatening the lack of houses remains, the real plight of dwelling does not lie merely in a lack of houses. The real plight of dwelling lies in this, that mortals ever search anew for the nature of dwelling, that they must ever learn to dwell. p. 90? In the age of the world’s night, the abyss of the world must be experienced and endured. But for this it is necessary that there be those who reach into the abyss. p. 215 Poetically man dwells Man acts as though he were the shaper and master of language, while in fact language remains the master of man. p. 225 Who is the god? Perhaps this question is too hard for man, and asked too soon. Let us therefore first ask what may be said about God. Let us first ask merely: what is God? p. 228 For a man to be blind, he must remain a being by nature endowed with sight. A piece of wood can never go blind.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Phillip

    goodreads really needs to create another option/button for couldn't read or couldn't finish. heidegger's poetry is fairly useless, and his dog-chasing-its-tail philosophy of where does art begin and where does the artist end (and vice-versa) left me cold. goodreads really needs to create another option/button for couldn't read or couldn't finish. heidegger's poetry is fairly useless, and his dog-chasing-its-tail philosophy of where does art begin and where does the artist end (and vice-versa) left me cold.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Billie Pritchett

    Martin Heidegger's Poetry, Language, Thought is a very obscure book. Heidegger writes in a style all his own, with phrases that he himself has coined and using imagery that favors pastoral and religious life. Nevertheless, I will try, very briefly, to translate the upshot of the essays in this collection from "Heideggerese" into plain English (inasmuch as I can make sense of them). "The Origin of the Work of Art" is about how the purpose of artwork is to reveal tensions--like the natural world ve Martin Heidegger's Poetry, Language, Thought is a very obscure book. Heidegger writes in a style all his own, with phrases that he himself has coined and using imagery that favors pastoral and religious life. Nevertheless, I will try, very briefly, to translate the upshot of the essays in this collection from "Heideggerese" into plain English (inasmuch as I can make sense of them). "The Origin of the Work of Art" is about how the purpose of artwork is to reveal tensions--like the natural world versus the man-made world, love and hate, success and failure, freedom and fate, and so on--and remind human beings of their place in the world and the way in which their connected to the ordinary and sacred world and the natural and man-made or social world. "What Are Poets For?" is an essay about how poets help people understand their place in the world, and they're especially capable of doing this "in destitute times," when people feel like they lost their way; poets can act as guides to remind them of a better way to live and deal with nature of the world. "Building Dwelling Thinking" is about how it is fundamental to human nature that human beings attempt to be comfortable in the world that they live in, and they do this through building, creating, and making connections between the natural world and social world, and between mysterious and ordinary aspects of the world--but of course, if they do not respect these different aspects of the world, and become too involved with calculating and measuring, studying the world scientifically, treating people and nature merely as things, and so on, then they lose this comfort; living in the world is, for human beings, learning how to live with these different aspects of the world in harmony. "The Thing" is about what things are, and Heidegger thinks things are whatever appropriately maintain a harmony with the divided aspect of the world: things are objects that fit comfortably for us into the natural and social world, and the mysterious and ordinary world. "Language" is an essay about language, and Heidegger asserts that language helps reveal the hidden nature of things but it is also something that happens to us, not just something we produce; I think what he has in mind something like the way in which whenever we sit quietly thoughts just come to us in language without us forcing them, and then it's up to us how we want to respond. "Poetically Man Dwells" is about how human being's true nature is to be comfortable in the world or, "dwell poetically." Heidegger thinks we can't quite do that because we've somehow lost our way, but we could somehow he regain that ability. I enjoy reading Heidegger as much as the next person, but no doubt some die-hard Heidgger-er will say that I've mischaracterized him in this essay. Quite possibly so. But I did as much as "thinking was up to the task" (using some Heideggerese here). Perhaps someone more knowledgable could tell me what it really means.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Alex Obrigewitsch

    This should not be considered Heidegger's aesthetics. It is a collection of texts which express art's (and particularily poetry's) role in the thinging of things and the worlding of the world - of the eventful appropriation which unfolds and holds together the unity of the fourfold. Poetry and art express the coming to be, the instatement, of the world in truth as unconcealing and taking place. Does this sound like aesthetics? It is the attempt at thinking outside of metaphysics, of which aesthe This should not be considered Heidegger's aesthetics. It is a collection of texts which express art's (and particularily poetry's) role in the thinging of things and the worlding of the world - of the eventful appropriation which unfolds and holds together the unity of the fourfold. Poetry and art express the coming to be, the instatement, of the world in truth as unconcealing and taking place. Does this sound like aesthetics? It is the attempt at thinking outside of metaphysics, of which aesthetics is a part. What is the work of art and what does it do? What is the speaking of language? What is poetry for and what of the poet? These are some of the questions that get folded up into the unfolding of Heidegger's thinking. He shows how the poet, as listener and follower of the divine and of langauge (intertwined in their unforseeable and impossible dimension at the limits of possibility), speaks in response, opening up the space for difference, for the never-yet, to come forth into its own as its own singular being. The unspeakable that Heidegger was oft wont to call Being, before abandoning it hopelessly to metaphysics and its impossibility of speaking the truth of the most eventful simplicity, lingers ever behind all of the writings collected herein. Heidegger is here ever attempting that single thought that he spent his life tracing down the paths of thought. This collection contains some key attempts at formulating a different or other expression of that most simple complexity that withdraws from all speaking. Perhaps most impressive, Heidegger enacts such a responsive thinking whilst also explaining that this responsive speaking is the poet's endevour, through explicating the poem or work at hand and thus letting it speak. Poetry and thinking - speaking the same differently.

  20. 5 out of 5

    FyzaReads

    This book is a collection of lectures and essays of Heidegger (considered later Heidegger) put together by the editor. The theme is to get to the nature/essence of particular phenomena which in this case is art. Heidegger's language is ambiguous. It takes time to understand what he means by "thinging of things," "working of work," "Being of beings" etc., etc. It helped to read slowly and to draw diagrams to understand the connections he formulates between different concepts. His writing becomes This book is a collection of lectures and essays of Heidegger (considered later Heidegger) put together by the editor. The theme is to get to the nature/essence of particular phenomena which in this case is art. Heidegger's language is ambiguous. It takes time to understand what he means by "thinging of things," "working of work," "Being of beings" etc., etc. It helped to read slowly and to draw diagrams to understand the connections he formulates between different concepts. His writing becomes more evident as one keeps on reading. The language almost grows on you till you feel like Heidegger is directly conversing with you and convincing you of his ideas. It was also interesting to learn how much Heidegger was influenced by the poetry of Holderlin and Rilke.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ann Michael

    These are challenging essays, especially if you haven't read his tome-like book on thinking and being. I objected deeply to "What Are Poets For?" Heidegger close-reads a Rilke poem in such a way as to prove Heidegger's own philosophical assertions, and it seems ludicrous. Go read Nabokov's Pale Fire instead, and laugh at that sort of attempt. There are some brilliant ideas, here, however. They just need to be read in context with more study of Heidegger. Though it seems logical to collect these th These are challenging essays, especially if you haven't read his tome-like book on thinking and being. I objected deeply to "What Are Poets For?" Heidegger close-reads a Rilke poem in such a way as to prove Heidegger's own philosophical assertions, and it seems ludicrous. Go read Nabokov's Pale Fire instead, and laugh at that sort of attempt. There are some brilliant ideas, here, however. They just need to be read in context with more study of Heidegger. Though it seems logical to collect these thematically-related texts into one book, the system fails to convey what Heidegger's really about. In my opinion.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Marie

    This isn't the kind of book you "finish", but rather one you return to time and again, in its entirety and in portions, but I have now indeed read it to the end for the first time, and shall let that stand as having "finished" it for now. Reading Heidegger is like getting into the sea, an element you have no control over and little understanding of, but which you decide to trust, and in which you allow yourself to bob, cork-like in its big, bosomy waves, catching an occasional toehold of sand or This isn't the kind of book you "finish", but rather one you return to time and again, in its entirety and in portions, but I have now indeed read it to the end for the first time, and shall let that stand as having "finished" it for now. Reading Heidegger is like getting into the sea, an element you have no control over and little understanding of, but which you decide to trust, and in which you allow yourself to bob, cork-like in its big, bosomy waves, catching an occasional toehold of sand or rock, delighted with yourself for daring and frustrated for not daring more.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Abeer Abdullah

    I did not like this, i only liked the poems at the beginning, philosophy is so hard to approach. I dont understand what it is or it's significance I did not like this, i only liked the poems at the beginning, philosophy is so hard to approach. I dont understand what it is or it's significance

  24. 4 out of 5

    Josh

    Thankfully, Albert Hofstadter gives in his introduction a pretty clear notion of what is to come. That should have been enough to make me put down the book, but curiosity got the better of me and I read "The Thing." Far be it from me to suggest that this book isn't worth your time, but either this translation serves to only render Heidegger's original illegible (which may very well be the case, considering the wordplay and nuances of the German language which are evidently at play); or else Heid Thankfully, Albert Hofstadter gives in his introduction a pretty clear notion of what is to come. That should have been enough to make me put down the book, but curiosity got the better of me and I read "The Thing." Far be it from me to suggest that this book isn't worth your time, but either this translation serves to only render Heidegger's original illegible (which may very well be the case, considering the wordplay and nuances of the German language which are evidently at play); or else Heidegger's thoughts are so underdeveloped and poorly articulated that they should scarcely be called thoughts, but I hesitate to call them anything else for fear that it would ire his sensibilities. There seems to be some sense of superiority or originality, as when Heidegger seems to claim that no one has thought about these things as he has. I'll stick to Husserl and Mearleau-Ponty for my phenomenonology, Sartre for my existentialism, and Rilke for poems which embody whatever it is that this book is struggling to point to.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Noah Poitras

    I picked this book up to kind of close off my reading of Heidegger, namely as it ventures away from the direct and formulaic metaphysics of his earlier works, but it didn't dissapoint in the rigour of the explanations. With 3 full-length essays, Heidegger takes a more tangible approach to some of his key concepts from Being & Time, and his works on other philosphers; specifically, this book really dissects the 'thing-in-itself' as well as the a priori conception of Art. What I've come to appreci I picked this book up to kind of close off my reading of Heidegger, namely as it ventures away from the direct and formulaic metaphysics of his earlier works, but it didn't dissapoint in the rigour of the explanations. With 3 full-length essays, Heidegger takes a more tangible approach to some of his key concepts from Being & Time, and his works on other philosphers; specifically, this book really dissects the 'thing-in-itself' as well as the a priori conception of Art. What I've come to appreciate about this collection is that it IS all over the place, and it does so in rather unshameful way. Each idea comes and goes, but serves to strengthen and locate the other concepts of the work across Heidegger's thought. The task of something like Being & Time is the existential analytic, whereas PLT feels like a continued following and more 'Worldly' development and application of the openness left at the end of B&T. I especially enjoyed Heidegger's discussions on technology as a view of the world, which rips things away from themselves towards the #grindset of production. I can see how Land would have been influenced by Heidegger early on, given H's Traklian tendencies. Either way, I recommend this book to those who have a basic knowledge of Heideggerian metaphysics or have seen lectures/understand the concepts, becuse I would consider this a diversion from his traditional works and readings.

  26. 5 out of 5

    oooow

    this book reveals how much of a structuralist Heidegger is and how damaging that can be for the art he suggests we use this against - in the pursuit of truth, of course. it is an aggressive act of interpreting art and a celebration of the mimetic theory in art. if readers would like to read some essays or books that talk about this differently, Susan Sontag's 'Against Interpretation' is a wonderful read to be acquainted with a much more organic and important way of looking at art and the world i this book reveals how much of a structuralist Heidegger is and how damaging that can be for the art he suggests we use this against - in the pursuit of truth, of course. it is an aggressive act of interpreting art and a celebration of the mimetic theory in art. if readers would like to read some essays or books that talk about this differently, Susan Sontag's 'Against Interpretation' is a wonderful read to be acquainted with a much more organic and important way of looking at art and the world itself.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Andrew Heritage

    An absolutely fascinating book early off, it delves into the nature of poetry, language, and thought (shocking given the title). It asks about what art is, what work is, and how art is work, and in what way art exists. Early essays are reminiscent of Being and Time, but the later works are ephemeral and spiritual which lost quite a bit of my interest. As I continue through my Heidegger journey I may come back and reread these to see if I still hold the same opinion.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Ben Guterson

    Over my head--plenty of interesting passages, though: "Is the structure of a simple propositional statement (the combination of subject and predicate) the mirror image of the structure of the thing (of the union of substance with accidents)? Or could it be that even the structure of the thing as thus envisaged is a projection of the framework of the sentence?" p. 23 Over my head--plenty of interesting passages, though: "Is the structure of a simple propositional statement (the combination of subject and predicate) the mirror image of the structure of the thing (of the union of substance with accidents)? Or could it be that even the structure of the thing as thus envisaged is a projection of the framework of the sentence?" p. 23

  29. 5 out of 5

    William Zeng

    In the shoes vibrates the silent call of the earth, its quiet gift of the ripening grain and its unexplained self-refusal in the fallow desolation of the wintry field. Art is something something truth about things in themselves something

  30. 5 out of 5

    Kristian Wong

    Hmmm my favourite was probably the essay on the snow/church bell poem. I read the book after my prof kept quoting Heidegger- did not regret! That one paragraph on calling (conjuring) words took me a while cos I’m slow. Please keep in mind his little black fash book.

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