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THREE DRAFTS OF BEING AND TIME

Aristotle. It existed in manuscript form into 1926, when Heidegger first drafted the historical Second Part of BT with its final Division bent on "destroying" Aristotle's texts "with the problematic of Temporality as our clue" (SZ 39f.). Since that portion of BT was never published, how previously thoroughly glossed texts like Nicomachean Ethics Z would have looked when examined from this newfound ontological perspective can only be the tantalizing subject of reconstructive and "deductive" speculation.

Thus, on August 5, 1925, the Marburg Philosophical Faculty could announce to the Berlin Ministry of Education that their candidate Heidegger now has two books "in the works": In addition to the old Aristotle book, which "will soon appear," "there is now also a systematic work of recent origin entitled Time and Being—now being printed—which shows Heidegger from another side, namely, as an autonomously developing philosophical thinker. "2

The drafts prefigured. When this nominating petition was dispatched to Berlin, Heidegger had indeed already drafted two semblances of BT in accord with the circumstances of a very busy academic life. He would not really draft the third and finally published version until the petition for his promotion was rejected by Berlin late in January 1926 (see Appendix C). That he would do this draft in the "space" of a month once again relates to the same academic necessities. The surprise is more in the number of conceptual innovations that still occur at that late stage in such a short period of time. This is the "inside story" that we wish to recount. What goes into the making of a Great Book?

Our focus is primarily the published "systematic" portion of BT, which nevertheless was written in a kind of envelope of promissory notes addressed to the never-published historical Part. BT as a text finds its start in the Introduction to the Aristotle book of October 1922, which in large part contains the only known preview of BT as a program, already distinguishing a systematic part from the historical part that Heidegger was then busily composing. With this outline in mind, Heidegger, perhaps by mid-1923, begins to think of composing at least a systematic essay to supplement his more historically oriented treatise on Aristotle. The course of SS 1923 concludes with a triad of questions that sets the pattern for the analysis of the environment which becomes a substructure in all of the drafts of BT. By the end of 1923, Heidegger has found the occasion and context, with the publication of the Dilthey-Yorck correspondence, to plan such a systematic essay in the form of a brief journal article. The actual drafting of texts which will eventually develop into the book of 1927 is thereby begun. Our book about a book now becomes the inside story of the movement of drafts and redrafts, the shuffling of texts which include not only articles and talks but also portions of


Theodore Kisiel - The Genesis of Being and Time