Review of Metaphysics 25 (2):349-349 (1971)

Kostos Axelos, Greek-born Professor of Philosophy at the Sorbonne and author of a trilogy in French, Le Déploiement de l'errance, and of several French translations of Lucás and Heidegger, attempts an important confrontation of the two thinkers whom many regard as the major thinkers in European thought today: Marx and Heidegger. To some this is a confrontation of the left and the right, but Axelos moves in an entirely different range altogether. Heidegger himself remarks that a confrontation with Marx must be made in terms of the problem of history. Both Heidegger and Marx--to some extent as the heirs of Hegel--are philosophers of the future. Axelos' book is written from the Heideggerian standpoint, centering on Heidegger's interpretation of the present age in terms of Technik, which is itself a movement in the mission of Being. The movements of the Geschick, as Heidegger says in Der Satz vom Grund and as Axelos emphasizes, are a world-play. The task of a thinking concerned with the future is to play along with the play. The future in Marxist and Heideggerian terms is a "planetary" age, beyond all nationalism, ruled by a global or planetary technology. Thinking must decide whether and how such technology will be an instrument of liberation or of oppression. Axelos' confrontation raises many central and interesting questions: what is the relationship between Heidegger's Gelassenheit and Marx's praxis? What hope is there for a future governed by a play? etc. The book can be recommended as both original and provocative.--J. D. C.
Keywords Catholic Tradition  Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest
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ISBN(s) 0034-6632
DOI revmetaph1971252209
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