Martin Heidegger and Kitayama Junyū

Nothingness, Emptiness, and the Thing

Authors

  • Eric S. NELSON Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.4312/as.2023.11.1.27-50

Keywords:

emptiness, Heidegger, modern Japanese philosophy, nothingness, things

Abstract

Heidegger’s early philosophical project was identified with a nihilistic philosophy of nothingness after the 1927 publication of Being and Time—with its depiction of the radical existential anxiety of being-towards-death—and his 1929 lecture “What is Metaphysics?”—with its analysis of the loss of all orientation and comportment in the face of an impersonal self-nihilating nothingness. Heidegger’s philosophy of nothingness would be contrasted in both Germany and Japan in the 1930s and 1940s with “Oriental nothingness” by authors such as Kitayama Junyū, a neglected Japanese philosopher active in Germany and an early interpreter of Heidegger and Nishida. In this contribution, I trace how Heidegger’s reflections on nothingness and emptiness (which are distinct yet intertwined expressions) become interculturally entangled with East Asian discourses in the early reception of his thought, particularly in Kitayama and the introduction of Nishida’s philosophy into Germany, and their significance in Heidegger’s “A Dialogue on Language”.

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Published

10. 01. 2023

How to Cite

Nelson, Eric S. 2023. “Martin Heidegger and Kitayama Junyū: Nothingness, Emptiness, and the Thing”. Asian Studies 11 (1): 27-50. https://doi.org/10.4312/as.2023.11.1.27-50.

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