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Heidegger, Cassirer, Davos, centers on this debate between these two philosophical adversaries. In his book Gordon examines the background of the debate. Heidegger and/or Cassirer at Davos. GEOFFREY WAITE. Cornell University. There was a famous discussion between Heidegger and Ernst Cassirer in Davos . In Ernst Cassirer and Martin Heidegger participated in a momentous debate in Heidegger, Cassirer, Davos, centers on this debate between these two.

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At the core of their debate at Davos and, it turns out, at the core of their entire philosophical thought lay, as Gordon puts it, “a cassiger contest between two normative images of humanity,” p.

They also contained a few swipes at Heidegger whom Cassirer sought subtly to connect to the anthropological tradition.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Cassirer, with more difficulty, also strove to accommodate these new energies by turning Kant’s epistemology into a casirer and ethnologically oriented philosophy of symbolic forms. Cassirer argues that while Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason emphasizes human temporality and finitude, he also sought to situate human cognition within a broader conception of humanity.

Heidegger, Cassirer, Davos

Gordon is well aware of the decisive role of Heidegger in twentieth-century philosophy. Fruitless as it was in the end for the casirer antagonists, the debate in fact stirred from the start an unusually wide interest. Gordon begins his book with a broad characterization of Cassirer’s and Heidegger’s philosophical positions.

Gordon reconstructs the debate between Heidegger and Cassirer, demonstrating its significance as a point of rupture in Continental thought that implicated all the major philosophical movements of the day. Neo-Kantianism had dominated the German philosophical scene for two generations or more, but by the s deep divisions were becoming evident in this school of thought.


The book can usefully be read as a sequel to Gordon’s earlier work, for the two books together draw an extraordinary picture of a unique moment in the history of twentieth-century German philosophy and culture.

We can see from it that his careful, informed, and scholarly analyses are meant, above all, to demythologize the debate and to return it to its proper heideggerr level in the context of its time. By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use. You are commenting using your Twitter account. Heeidegger Being and Time, which had put him at the center of German philosophy inreadily incorporated all these new forces. Attempts to revive his fortunes are, I am afraid, doomed to failure.

Heidegger, Cassirer, Davos by Peter E. Heidegger’s provocative thesis was also to form the basis of the debate between him and Cassirer, which was the recognized high point of the entire seminar sessions at Davos.

Our recent titles are available via Edelweiss. Through a close and painstaking analysis, Gordon dissects the exchange itself to reveal that it was at core a philosophical disagreement over what it means to be human. To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: Cool, controlled, assured in its grasp of the historical sources, exhilarating in its analytic skills, the book highlights a whole and important epoch in intellectual history while focusing on a single, illuminating facet.

Cassirer’s career as a professor of philosophy at Hamburg and then as rector of that University and as the consummate interpreter of the Kantian tradition testifies to this fact.

Cassirer–Heidegger debate – Wikipedia

In chapter 5 Gordon turns the clock back and asks by what route Cassirer and Heidegger had reached the Davos debate, and we discover that they had had a series of productive interactions before that event.

The Cassirer—Heidegger debate is an encounter between Martin Heidegger and Ernst Cassirer in March in DavosSwitzerland [1] concerning the significance of Kantian notions of freedom and rationality. Their disagreement can be understood only if we appreciate their common point of departure as thinkers of the German interwar crisis, an era of rebellion that touched all of the major philosophical movements of the day—life-philosophy, philosophical anthropology, neo-Kantianism, phenomenology, and existentialism.


He takes Cassirer to have been “indisputably” one of the greatest philosophers of the twentieth century and, even more volubly, “one of the greatest philosophers and intellectual historians to emerge from the cultural ferment of modern Germany. It remains, even today, a touchstone of philosophical memory.

This page was last edited on 18 Decemberat Rosenzweig died in late before the Nazis gained power and Cassirer himself was forced to seek refuge in England, Sweden, and finally the United States, where he died as a professor at Yale University injust as the Nazi terror was reaching an end.

Comparative and Continental Philosophy.

But, it must be added, philosophical systems tend to be amalgams generated from many components derived from multiple sources. Edward Lear is an apt character to think about at Christmas-time. For philosophical readers, Continental Divide as well as Gordon’s earlier book are hridegger to prove of interest primarily because of what they say about Heidegger, his thought, his life, and his times.

Gordon’s book presents us with a paradigm of what intellectual history should look like. The digital Loeb Classical Library loebclassics. As Gordon explains, the Davos heidegged would continue to both inspire and provoke well after the two men had gone their separate ways.