Franco Volpi - Heidegger and Aristotle

Translated by Pete Ferreira


V. Final comments

Regarding now the matter with which we had introduced the topic of our research, it seem appropriate to bring up some considerations that again take up the thread along which the survey traveled and illuminate a vision of its overall meaning.

The presence of Aristotle in Heidegger's thought has emerged in initially unsuspected proportions and we featured the main stages of its emergence and its influence on the formation of Heidegger's philosophical perspective. The problem of being and of its unity in the juvenile stage, the successive verifications of its four fundamental meanings, and the assimilative appropriation of ontology and the Aristotelian practical philosophy in the 1920s, finally the careful auscultation of determinations as ἀλήθεια, ἐνέργεια and φύσις in the search for the un-thought in metaphysics after the 'turn': these are the fundamental stages of the analysis which has allowed us to make plausible our hypothesis and shows Heidegger challenging Aristotle in the act.

In addition to the massive and widespread character of Aristotle's presence in Heidegger, and beyond the fundamentality of the themes that characterize it, what we intended to bring to light, which in conclusion should be stressed once again, is the particular horizon in which this presence manifests itself, i.e. the tension and speculative disposition that characterize Heidegger's confrontation with the Aristotelian texts, so that – as we said in the opening – Heidegger's thought represents a dense stitching of Aristotle's presence in our century. It does not give us a simple interpretation of Aristotle, but enacts a radical attempt at renewal with an invigorating understanding of the fundamental problems which for the first time are grasped in Aristotle's text and shown to Western thought.

A page from Franco Volpi's Heidegger and Aristotle