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Philosophy Today

Volume 60, Issue 2, Spring 2016

Johannes Fritsche
Pages 583-608

National Socialism, Anti-Semitism, and Philosophy in Heidegger and Scheler
On Peter Trawny’s Heidegger & the Myth of a Jewish World-Conspiracy

According to Trawny, Heidegger’s Black Notebooks show that he turned away from any National Socialism in 1938 and that his thinking could be “contaminated” by National Socialism and anti-Semitism only between 1931 and 1944/1945. However, in this paper it is argued that already in Being and Time (1927) Heidegger had made a case for National Socialism; that he discovered in 1938 the “true” National Socialism, and that Trawny’s main criterion regarding Heidegger’s anti-Semitism is false. Heidegger’s case is compared with Max Scheler, who, because of Hitler, turned from the right to the centre. In addition, alternatives to Trawny’s detailed interpretations of three of Heidegger’s anti-Semitic remarks are offered, it is shown that Trawny misconstrues Heidegger’s anti-Semitism, and the anti-Semitic aspects of Heidegger’s history of Being are presented.

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