Eidos, No. 19: July-December, 2013

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Affirming Solitude: Heidegger and Blanchot on Art

Gary Peters


Where Heidegger, as thinker, describes the increasing solitude, and consequent inhumanity of the artwork; Blanchot, as writer, speaks of a solitude that is integral to the very act of speaking. Such speech/writing does not describe but is inscribed by the very solitude that brings it into being. So, while it is true that both Heidegger and Blanchot ‘speak about this speaking solitude’, the thought of the former incessantly speaks-of the leap from one space to another and the infinitely postponed commencement of an ‘other beginning’ freed from all humanist comforts; the writing of the latter speaks-from within what he calls the ‘space of literature’, that is to say, from within art and through the artwork. Blanchot speaks as, and on behalf of, the artist, not in order to speak-of Being but to speak-as artist and to speak-for the artwork. In other words, the task of the philosopher is to think, while the task (or the curse) of the artist is to make, to think, but then continue to make within the transformed space of this thinking/making.


Art, solitude, loneliness, affirmation, preservation, creation


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Electronic ISSN: 2011-7477
Department of Humanities and Philosophy
Universidad del Norte
Contact: eidos@uninorte.edu.co