By Anya Topolski
Born in jap Europe, trained within the West lower than the tips of Martin Heidegger and the phenomenological culture, and compelled to escape in the course of the Holocaust as a result of their Jewish identification, it's going to come as no shock that Emmanuel Levinas and Hannah Arendt's rules intersect in a huge means. This booklet demonstrates for the 1st time the importance of a discussion among Levinas' ethics of alterity and Arendt's politics of plurality. Anya Topolski brings their respective initiatives into discussion via the thought of relationality, an idea encouraged by way of the Judaic culture that's in demand in either thinker's paintings. The publication explores questions in terms of the connection among ethics and politics, the Judaic contribution to rethinking the that means of the political after the Shoah, and the position of relationality and accountability for politics. the result's an alternate perception of the political in response to the guidelines of plurality and alterity that goals to be relational, inclusive, and empowering.
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Additional info for Arendt, Levinas and a Politics of Relationality
A concrete expression of Levinas’s intellectual response is how he ‘develops his ontology in deliberate contrast to the ontology of Heidegger’. 32 Cohen demonstrates this in ‘Levinas: thinking least about death— contra Heidegger’, 33 in which he demonstrates how Levinas rejects Heidegger’s egocentric focus on the death of the self and turns instead to alterity and life by means of phenomenological analyses of fecundity and eros. Similarly, as developed by Jung, Arendt ‘opposes Heidegger whose Biographical and Philosophical Intersections 17 Dasein is characterized by death or mortality, [whereas] Arendt defines the initium of action, which is the foundation of human capacity to create new realities, in terms of the facticity of birth or natality’.
39 According to Arendt, the self can only answer the question ‘who am I’ by interacting with the other. Likewise, for Levinas, in his analysis of substitution or hineni, 40 the other constitutes the self’s whoness. For both thinkers the ‘who’ is fundamentally a relational disclosure, as it is the other who singularizes the self as unique, irreplaceable and responsible. Perhaps the most obvious, and thus most forgotten, inheritance from Heidegger—rooted in the phenomenological method—is the importance of space and time, or temporality.
37 While in his later work, the world is that which is outside the totality of the ego, in the space of externality, and in this sense is an openness to infinity. 18 Chapter 1 Another shared Heideggerian concept is the focus on someone’s (ontological) ‘whoness’ or personhood as opposed to someone’s (ontic) ‘whatness’ (quidditas). For Heidegger the correct question to pose of Dasein is ‘who’ are you, rather than ‘what’ is Dasein. ‘The “who” question “discloses” (to use Heidegger’s term) the difference between Dasein and other beings’.
Arendt, Levinas and a Politics of Relationality by Anya Topolski