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Heidegger and the festival of being : from the bridal festival to the round dance Warnes, Mathias


This dissertation consists in a hermeneutical-phenomenological and being-historical investigation of the time-play-space of “the festival” in the Collected Works of the philosopher Martin Heidegger (1889-1976). After introducing the scope and limits of the research within the primary and secondary literatures, followed by an interpretation of the festival in the 1920s, I show how the festival becomes prominent in the mid-1930s by way of Heidegger’s first sustained reading of Hölderlin, where the theme of the “bridal festival” of humans and gods first emerges, and next in “The Origin of the Work of Art” essay, which mentions “the festival of thinking.” From these two texts the festival then extends its resonances throughout the later writings, and culminates after 1946 in a thinking of the “round dance.” I focus on the bridal festival as a) the initiatory event of tragic being; b) the fissuring clasping of unbound demigods; and, c) the central thought of Heidegger’s being-historical thinking of the Greek gods and possible future for Hesperia.

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