Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Philosophy (School of Philosophy and Theology)

Schools and Centres

Philosophy and Theology

First Supervisor

Professor Philip Matthews

Second Supervisor

Dr Joe Naimo

Third Supervisor

Associate Professor Angus Brook


Martin Heidegger’s Contributions to Philosophy (Of the Event) is the first of a series of seven works centred on his concept of the Event (Ereiginis). It is also considered to be his second major work after Being and Time. Written in a form often cited as not fit for publication, it nevertheless exhibits the blueprint for Heidegger’s famous Turn (Kehre). The emphasis of this historical study lies in recognising the contemporaneous manifestation of the “Abandonment by beyng” in its destructive capacity. The nihilistic individual is at the core of this Abandonment, which showcases Heidegger’s description of the individual during the twentieth century. From here, the overcoming of nihilism is envisioned through the uncovering of the “Forgottenness of beyng” in its hiddenness in the Abandonment by beyng. So, the starting point of this thesis and its explication of the Event is in the Forgottenness of beyng and its historical foundation in the “first beginning”. The Event as such is a call for the thinking of beyng, an assessment of the thinking out of an “other beginning”. Taking this into account, the first and second chapter serve as a foundation for the core of the thesis; first by exploring Heidegger’s controversial Turn (Kehre) and second, by providing a reconstruction of the Contributions.

This thesis will then demonstrate the two-fold consequence of the Forgottenness of beyng, namely: the Abandonment by beyng and the Question-worthiness of beyng.

A separate chapter will be dedicated to each of the three main concepts; the Forgottenness, Abandonment and the Question-worthiness. The hidden nature of the Forgottenness will be the main focus to begin with, which includes its historical background in the first beginning and complementing its ‘continuance’ in the Abandonment by beyng. An exposition of the Abandonment by beyng where the age of machination and lived experience coupled with the human being’s ignorance of Being within this age are ushered in as a result. This will be demonstrated in its final form in nihilism and its creation of an opening for the Question-worthiness as a response. Effectively, this is an exploration of the other beginning’s thinking of beyng and its necessity for overcoming the first beginning and its foundation in the Forgottenness.

This paper will conclude with a comprehensive analysis of this tripartite exposition; showing the deficiencies in Heidegger’s study of Plato and the Pre-Socratics coupled with the lack of attention being placed on Hegel’s similar call for another beginning in philosophy. Using real world examples, Heidegger’s Abandonment by beyng will be shown to be his strongest exposition within the Contributions, although the historical narrative that is portrayed within the text proves problematic. This is most evident in Heidegger’s reading of Plato, to whom he attributes the distortion of truth and the beginning of the Forgottenness of beyng. Finally, the uniqueness of the Question-worthiness will be shown to be crucial for overcoming the Abandonment’s inherence within the Forgottenness.

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