Kuki Shūzō and the Question of Hermeneutics

Comparative and Continental Philosophy 1 (1):23-37 (2009)
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Abstract

This essay is an overview of the intellectual itinerary of the Japanese philosopher Kuki Shūzō . Kuki first came to the attention of Western readers in Heidegger’s A Dialogue on Language between a Japanese and an Inquirer. After correcting the record on Kuki with regards to this famous piece, the essay turns to the work that Heidegger and the Japanese Inquirer were discussing, namely, The Structure of Iki. The essay discusses both the background and basic arguments of this work. The essay then expands on Kuki’s Western reception, indicating that his thinking evolved beyond his early work with the phenomenon of iki. His later thinking concerns the problem of contingency and the essay concludes with a discussion of his late work, The Problem of Contingency. The essay reviews Kuki’s thinking as a whole in order to develop a sense of his hermeneutics

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