Heidegger's Race

Hemming, Laurence Paul (2022) Heidegger's Race. In: Heidegger and the Human :. SUNY series in Contemporary Continental Philosophy . SUNY Press, Albany NY, 227–257. ISBN 9781438490496

[thumbnail of 2022 Hemming Heidegger's Race Ftn]
Text (2022 Hemming Heidegger's Race Ftn)
2022_Hemming_Heidegger_s_Race_Ftn.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (520kB)


This article asks ‘what was Martin Heidegger’s understanding of race?’ in the context of recent discussions of that question by Sonia Sikka, Robert Bernasconi and Jeffrey Barash. It takes a now notorious remark made by Heidegger in lectures delivered immediately after his resignation as Rector of Freiburg University (in 1934) that there are those “blacks, in particular, African blacks” of whom it is said “they are without history” and shows that this was not a once-only comment, but has a longer history in Heidegger’s oeuvre. The article examines that history, and then shows the extent to which Heidegger is commenting on and coming to terms with a tradition of commentary on race established by Hegel. The article proceeds by contrasting Hegel’s and Heidegger’s respective understanding of history within the wider understanding of Hegel’s metaphysics. The article concludes by showing how Heidegger’s understanding of race is connected both with his critique of Hegel and the question of his criticism and his support of the Nazi state.

Item Type:
Contribution in Book/Report/Proceedings
ID Code:
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
27 Jul 2022 14:55
Last Modified:
06 Dec 2023 01:37