This Thinking Lacks a Language: Heidegger and Gadamer’s Question of Being


Martin Heidegger’s preparation of the question of human existence was the focus of his seminal work Being and Time, first published in 1927. This paper refers to Heidegger’s phenomenological work through Heidegger’s colleague and friend Hans-Georg Gadamer to focus on how Heidegger prepares the question of Being and the problem of language in his later work. In his conversation with the Japanese scholar professor Tezuka, the meaning of language in the west appears to restrict an understanding of Being by conceptualising it ad infinitum. To the Japanese the simple term “what is” appears to be closer to Being because it does not attempt to conceptualise it. Therefore, Heidegger, Gadamer and Tezuka’s discussion about ontology concludes that language does get in the way of understanding Being.

Keywords: Heidegger, Gadamer, being, ontology, language

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