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THE POLITICS OF THE HOMELESS SPIRIT: HEIDEGGER AND LEVINAS ON DWELLING AND HOSPITALITY

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Abstract:

In this article, the authors examine the Heidegger-Levinas debate on dwelling and hospitality and assess its larger philosophical and political implications. Although Heidegger and Levinas are both critical of the subjectivist stance that engenders the rise of the homeless spirit, they posit different solutions to the Hegelian problematic, with Heidegger advocating an ontology of dwelling and Levinas propounding an ethic of hospitality (hospitalite). After a discussion of the larger political ramifications of their respective projects, we conclude with a critical assessment of Heideggerian homecoming and Levinasian hospitality. More specifically, we attempt to identify the essential elements of a politics of place that is appreciative of the tension that exists between home and homelessness, between Ulysses and Abraham.

Keywords: Abraham; Antigone; Hegel; Nietzsche; Third; alterity; dwelling; ethical; ethics; homecoming; homelessness; hospitality; journey; ontological; ontology; place; polis; subjectivism; subjectivity; technology

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Political Science, Louisiana State University, 240 Stubbs Hall, Baton Rouge, LA, 70803-5433, USA., Email: poeubk@lsu.edu 2: :, Email: davidgauthier14@yahoo.com

Publication date: January 1, 2011

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