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Giving a DamnEssays in Dialogue with John Haugeland$
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Zed Adams and Jacob Browning

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780262035248

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262035248.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM MIT PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.mitpress.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright The MIT Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MITSO for personal use.date: 19 September 2021

Love and Death

Love and Death

(p.131) 4 Love and Death
Giving a Damn

Joseph Rouse

The MIT Press

This paper explicates and connects two of Haugeland’s most controversial philosophical claims: his puzzling claim that the characteristic form of intentionality and human understanding is love, and his revisionist interpretation of Heidegger’s account of “existential death” in Being and Time. The former claim responds to Haugeland’s implicit classification and telling criticisms of the predominant alternative conceptions of intentionality. Haugeland argues that these alternatives actually fit different phenomena (“ersatz” or “lapsed” intentionality) that fall short of even the most ordinary human comportments. The latter claim treats “death” as concerned not with human mortality, but with the objective accountability of entire domains of human activity and understanding. Heidegger thereby has a deeper, more adequate account of intentionality and understanding directly complementing Haugeland’s re-conception of intentionality as a form of love. This reading also brings Being and Time into closer critical engagement with Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit. This juxtaposition further illuminates Heidegger’s Kantian emphasis upon the finitude of human understanding, and brings out the political significance of Being and Time in constructively revealing ways despite Heidegger’s own later disastrous political involvement.

Keywords:   John Haugeland, Hegel, Intentionality, Human Understanding, Love, Existential Death, Heidegger, Finitude

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