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Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy

Volume 15, Issue 1, Fall 2010

James Wood
Pages 221-247

Contra Heidegger
A Defense of Plato’s “Productionist Metaphysics”

This paper confronts Heidegger’s critique of Platonism and defends Plato as a productionist metaphysician. Heidegger misunderstands and abuses Platonic metaphysics. Rather than initiating the reification of being (Sein) in beings (das Seiende) and the subordination of nature to human control, as Heidegger accuses, Plato offers us a non-dogmatic metaphysics of human possibility oriented by and subordinated to being, conceived equally as the good and the beautiful. The relevant production constitutes the ethical counterpart of Platonic metaphysics: it is the responsible bringing of ourselves to “presence” in accordance with the measures given in nature, a process that is erotic, progressive, and always on-the-way.

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