42     Plank Two: Discovering

an entity’s that-being is not the entity’s true that-being. But that means, again, that Polt’s excess cannot be the same as earth in ‘The Origin of the Work of Art’, as he claims. For ‘[e]arth is not simply the closed but that which rises up as self-closing [Sichverschließendes]’ (OWA: 31/GA5: 42) (as does, for instance, the materiality of the work of art’s materials), whereas Polt’s excess does not so rise up into self-manifesting. And it means, second, that Polt is positing excess as some sort of noumenal substratum. But Heidegger rejects any noumenal substrate for the meaningful appearing of entities.18 He holds that when we make sense of entities, we allow those entities to show themselves as they are; we do not throw meaning on top of some non-intelligible substrate. But Polt seems committed, as does Camus, to the idea that there is something there underneath and beyond the meaning that we make of things.

Polt acknowledges that Heidegger rejects this sort of noumenal move i. As he explains it, there is nothing ‘behind’ or ‘beyond’ being when being is manifest to us.19 Absent that manifestation, there simply is no meaning. But Polt takes his own account to be different in that he locates the noumenal excess not in being but in entities. I do not, however, think that this move solves the problem. Heidegger’s point is not that when being shows itself there is nothing ‘behind’ it. When Heidegger talks about being, he is always talking about the being of an entity (plank two) or the being of entities as a whole and as such (plank three). (I take the latter to be what is named by ‘being as such’ and ‘being itself ’). To reject the move that posits something beyond being is to say that when an entity shows itself or entities as a whole and as such show themselves, there is nothing ‘beyond’ or ‘behind’ that manifesting. This says: there is nothing to entities beyond their meaningful presencing to us. Of course, this claim raises problems for Heidegger, many of which are articulated in the debate over where to situate Heidegger’s ontology vis-à-vis realism and idealism.20 I do not want to wade into that

18 Heidegger explicitly rejects Kant’s thing-in-itself in Phenomenological Interpretation of Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason, 68–9. See also SZ: §7.

19 Polt, ‘Meaning, Excess, and Event’, 30.

20 See, for example, William Blattner, ‘Is Heidegger a Kantian Idealist?’, Blattner, ‘Heidegger’s Kantian Idealism Revisited’, David R. Cerbone, ‘World, World-Entry, and Realism in Early Heidegger’, Kris McDaniel, ‘Heidegger and the “There Is” of Being’, and Joseph K. Schear, ‘Phenomenology and Metaphysics: On Moore’s Heidegger’.