Chapter

Vorhandenheit

Denis McManus

in Heidegger and the Measure of Truth

Published in print November 2012 | ISBN: 9780199694877
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191745706 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199694877.003.0004
Vorhandenheit

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This chapter explores a central concept in Heidegger's early thought, ‘Vorhandenheit’ or ‘presence-at-hand’. In particular, it explores its relationship to ‘the Theoretical Attitude’ and to ‘Zuhandenheit’, or ‘readiness-to-hand’. It is argued that these relationships are more complex than has been recognized, with many different notions subsumed under Vorhandenheit and Zuhandenheit — a multiplicity of notions whose own interrelationships are less than clear. How these issues bear on Heidegger's understanding of assertion and science is explored, along with difficulties in understanding the proposal that our perception of the Vorhanden is ‘founded’ in our engagement with the Zuhanden, which I refer to as the Primacy of Practice Claim.

Keywords: presence-at-hand; readiness-to-hand; theoretical attitude; assertion; proposition; science; pragmatism; practice

Chapter.  10703 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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