The overcoming of overcoming

on Dominique Janicaud

Simon Critchley

pp. 433-447

This paper aims to give an overview of the central preoccupations of the work of Dominique Janicaud. In the first part, I discuss Janicaud's basic strategy with regard to Heidegger's work, with particular reference to the question of metaphysics and its overcoming. Opposing Heidegger's alternative between the completion of metaphysics in technology (Gestell), on the one hand, and the experience of meditative thinking (Gelassenheit), on the other, Janicaud's position can be described as what I call an overcoming of all claims at overcoming, whether it concerns metaphysics, rationality or humanity. This leads, in the second part of the paper, to a discussion of Janicaud's radical and compelling reconsideration of the genealogy of rationality in his major work, La puissance du rationnel. This genealogy permits Janicaud to sketch a novel conception of reason as what he calls partage, conceived as both the shared space of dialogue and the sense of the thrown contingency of our existence. In the third part of the paper, and with reference to posthumously published work, I go on to show how this conception of partage shapes Janicaud's conception of the human condition and how this conception shows a significant debt to Pascal.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1023/B:MAWO.0000015914.51522.eb

Full citation:

Critchley, S. (2003). The overcoming of overcoming: on Dominique Janicaud. Continental Philosophy Review 36 (4), pp. 433-447.

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