Volume 20, Issue 2, Spring 2016
Imagination as Groundless Ground
Reconsidering Heidegger's Kantbuch
This essay attempts to further the Heideggerian reading of the transcendental imagination in Kant's Critique of Pure Reason, by substantiating Heidegger’s contested claims, that (1.) the imagination is identical to “original time,” (2.) the imagination generates secondary, successive time, and (3.) therefore categories of the understanding are formal abstractions from a more primordial temporal horizon. I argue that Heidegger’s reading of Kant remains completely tenable based on A 142-143, by first examining Heidegger's thesis, and then defending it by analyzing the above-mentioned section. Finally, I comment on the implications of the Heideggerian reading, in terms of both the role of the transcendental imagination in the Kantian system, as well as the implications of Heidegger’s overall deconstruction of reason itself.