Relating to Mortality. The Question of Death in Levinas and Heidegger

Essay, 2019

14 Pages, Grade: 63 (70 being distinction)

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The question of death is addressed through the philosophy of the Other in Levinas and the philosophy of Being in Heidegger. Levinas contests Heideggerian ontology as first philosophy and presents an ethical account to re-work themes that are related to the conception of death in the ontological approach. Adopting ethics as first philosophy, Levinas prioritises the Other over the Heideggerian Being, thus, attempting to traverse the ontological difference. Accordingly, the essential aim of the Levinasian philosophy is then, attaining meaning that “ontology does not exhaust” (GDT, p. 59). Thus the philosophy of Levinas originates from the need to face “the epic of being”, and go beyond it, rescue the radical Other: “To reduce every philosophical effort to the error or errancy of onto-theo-logy is only one possible reading of the history of philosophy” (ibid.).

Levinas asks: “Is meaning always an event of being? To be—is this the significance of meaning? Should we say that humanity (…) reducible to ontology?” The last question for Heidegger is “What does being signify?” (ibid., p. 58).

there is no other question for him, even if this question immediately became anxiety about death (…) Does death come down only to tying the knot of the intrigue of being? Does death not have its eminent meaning in the death of others, where it signifies “by way of” an event that cannot be reduced to its being? (…) And if humanity is not exhausted in the service of being, then does not my responsibility for another (in its emphatic sense: my responsibility for the death of another, my responsibility as a survivor) rise up behind the question: What is it to be? Does it not arise behind the anxiety over my own death? And would time then not call for a different interpretation of the projection toward the future? (ibid.).

In both Levinas and Heidegger, the subject’s relation to death and mortality is a fundamental philosophical front. Heidegger considers our “successful” relation to death fundamental in leading an authentic life. As such, being-toward-death has an inexorable role in his overall analysis of Dasein. Finitude, mortality, and death, then, is constitutive in the analysis of Sein und Zeit. “It is only in being-toward-death that the temporality of one’s own being, and the historical–ontological context within which one’s own being finds its ultimate sense, are disclosed” (Cohen, 2006, p. 23).

Dasein lacks. It is not whole and “such a lack of totality signifies that there is something still outstanding in one’s potentiality-for-Being” (BT, 236). To this not yet, to this outstanding, death as the end of Being-in-the-world belongs. “This end, which belongs to the potentiality-for-Being -that is to say, to existence- limits and determines me every case whatever totality is possible for Dasein” (234). Death is the absolute possibility of Dasein, as well as its ownmost potentiality-for-Being. “This is a possibility in which the issue is nothing less than Dasein’s Being-in-the-world. Its death is the possibility of no-longer being-able-to-be-there. If Dasein stands before itself as this possibility, it has been fully assigned to its ownmost potentiality-for-Being.” (BT, 251). Dasein is in the unique position as a being, to stand before itself as the representation of all possibilities – death signifies the potent life as much as termination of being, and this is why Sein Zum Tode is a bridge to an authentic life.

Death is the possibility of the absolute impossibility of Dasein. Thus death reveals itself as that possibility which is one’s ownmost, which is non-relational, and which is not to be outstripped [ unüberholbare ]. As such, death is something distinctively impending. Its existential possibility is based on the fact that Dasein is essentially disclosed to itself, and disclosed, indeed, as ahead-of-itself. This item in the structure of care has its most primordial concretion in Being-towards-death (ibid., 252).

For Heidegger, our way towards a certain death is what constitutes the very mode of existence. We are to “see that the ‘not yet’ of death” as “part of what it means to exist” (Chanter, 2001, p. 104). We are able to understand Dasein in its totality even if we are finite, as mortality is a component of Dasein’s being. “Death is not to be thought of as an additional, accidental event, without which Dasein’s structure cannot be understood, or without which Dasein remains incomplete, but rather as the inevitable end to Dasein” (ibid., p. 105). Thus, finitude does not present itself as a problem in our attempt to understand Dasein holistically, we recognise and treat it as a feature of Dasein’s mode of existence: “Thus Heidegger conceives of death as the ‘possibility of impossibility’ (…) By reorienting his reflections about time away from the traditional priority philosophers have granted to the present, and toward the future, Heidegger, by the same token, privileges death over the now” (ibid.).

Levinas’ approach to the question of death is essentially recognising the absolute otherness of death: “The relation with death, more ancient than any experience, is not the vision of being or nothingness” (GDT, p. 15). He therefore seeks to eliminate the mediation of Being, as the agency between subject and the Other. By centralising the Other, he treats the concept of death as an absolute altarity that transcends our understanding. For Richard Cohen (2006), Levinas’ demarcation allows for the “self-understanding of human subjectivity, and in this way heralds the transcending of human subjectivity as understanding” (p. 30). Levinas approaches the question of death on the basis of separation and attempts to avoid falling back to Being –he attempts to free death as the absolute Other. Consequently, for him death is not “the possibility of the absolute impossibility of Dasein” but “the impossibility of possibility”: “Death -suffocation in the impossibility of the possible” (TI, p. 57). It is not a matter of Dasein taking hold of the reins of time, “owning” itself and its death (and it is not a matter of authenticity or inauthenticity). Rather, the subject faces an impenetrable force which it must stand “against”:

In the being for death of fear I am not faced with nothingness, but faced with what is against me, as though murder, rather than being one of the occasions of dying, were inseparable from the essence of death, as though the approach of death remained one of the modalities of the relation with the Other. The violence of death threatens as a tyranny, as though proceeding from a foreign will. The order of necessity that is carried out in death is not like an implacable law of determinism governing a totality, but is rather like the alienation of my will by the Other (TI, p. 234).

What Levinas opens a space for, is a possibility of a duality, a radical Other as well as a radical subject. Heideggerian Being-toward-death is, thus, displaced by an imminence which is “at the same time menace and postponement. It pushes on, and it leaves time” (TI, p. 235). This is not the Heideggerian subject who comes to terms with a singular, individual mortality and reconciling with it to attain authenticity – the subject is not “towards” death: “To be temporal is both to be for death and to still have time, to be against death” (ibid.).

In the way the menace affects me in imminence resides my being implicated by the menace, and the essence of fear. It is a relation with an instant whose exceptional character is due not to the fact that it is at the threshold of nothingness or of a rebirth, but to the fact that, in life, it is the impossibility of every possibility, the stroke of a total passivity alongside of which the passivity of the sensibility, which moves into activity, is but a distant imitation. Thus the fear for my being which is my relation with death is not the fear of nothingness, but the fear of violence-and thus it extends into fear of the Other, of the absolutely unforeseeable (ibid.).

Levinas sees in death a total negation, a departure (an adieu). In Heidegger, I have power over my death, it is a possibility, whereas in Levinas, death “describes an empirical and normative limit to all possibility and to my fateful powers of projection. My relation to finitude limits my potentiality and my ability to be” (BLH, 2014, p. 320). This is why, death is always and in each case, a murder.

Mineness and Responsibility

Dasein is authentic insofar as it acknowledges and affirms its death, and I cannot give my death to someone else: “By its essence, death is in each case mine, in so far as it ‘is’ at all” (BT, 241). In being-towards-death, I become aware of my lostness within the idle talk of das Man, see myself as projection, and project myself to my possibilities and futures, and onto my death. In its ownmost possibility, Dasein understands that “in this distinctive possibility of its own self, it has been wrenched away from the ‘they’ (…) when one understands that this is something which Dasein ‘can’ have done, this only reveals its factical lostness in the everydayness of the they-self (263).

Death does not just “belong” to one’s own Dasein in an undifferentiated way; death lays claim to it as an individual Dasein. The non-relational character of death, as understood in anticipation, individualizes Dasein down to itself. This individualizing is a way in which the “there” is disclosed for existence. It makes manifest that all Being-alongside the things with which we concern ourselves, and all Being-with Others, will fail us when our ownmost potentiality-for-Being is the issue. Dasein can be authentically itself only if it makes this possible for itself of its own accord (264).

Dasein can access its termination “objectively” and have the experience of death, as “Dasein is essentially Being with Others” (238). However, even if Dasein is able to attain an objective experience of death, this does not lead to an ontological delimitation of its totality (ibid.). It cannot be a substitute for Dasein’s own death. What we witness in the event of the other’s death is “that remarkable phenomenon of Being which may be defined as the change-over of an entity from Dasein’s kind of Being (or life) to no-longer-Dasein. The end of the entity qua Dasein is the beginning of the same entity qua something present-at-hand” (ibid.).

No one can take the Other’s dying away from him. Of course someone can “go to his death for another”. But that always means to sacrifice oneself for the Other “in some definite affair”. Such “dying for” can never signify that the Other has thus had his death taken away in even the slightest degree. Dying is something that every Dasein itself must take upon itself at the time (…) In dying, it is shown that mineness and existence are ontologically constitutive for death. Dying is not an event; it is a phenomenon to be understood existentially (240).

The death of others is experienced as loss, pain and suffering but “the dying of Others is not something which we experience in a genuine sense; at most we are always just ‘there alongside’” (239). Death is non-substitutable, irreplaceable, and unshareable. Winkler (2018) notes that Dasein “will always use singular pronouns, my death, your death. Dasein owns its relation to death in a privileged, first-person way. To be sure, that is true not only of the relation to death. It is true also of existence and of experience” (p. 7). And if death understood as “the non-contingent limit of language and thought” (ibid.) is a name of an impossibility, in the sense that one is no more, language merely relates to a common idea of death, and one cannot make death as such, belong to one’s own: “the relation to death dissolves every kind of unity and identity”, and death is an “empty signifier (…) that is also why a first-person ownership of the relation to death is a de jure impossibility” (ibid.).1

For Levinas, responsibility overcomes the solitude of Dasein. Death is a social event. A dying being is always in relation with the Other, and in an ethical bond. Death “approaches in the fear of someone, and hopes in someone… A social conjunction is maintained in this menace” (TI, p. 234). And This question -the question of death- is unto itself its own response: it is my responsibility for the death of the other. The passage to the ethical level is what constitutes the response to this question. The turning of the Same toward the Infinite, which is neither aiming nor vision, is the question, a question that is also a response, but in no way a dialogue of the soul with itself. A question, a prayer—is this not prior to dialogue? The question contains the response as ethical responsibility, as an impossible escape (GDT, p. 12).

What individuates me “in the responsibility I have for him” (ibid.), is the Other, not the Heideggerian being-towards-death. Accordingly, Derrida (1993) writes:

[I]f death is indeed the possibility of the impossible… then man, or man as Dasein, never has a relation to death as such, but only to perishing, to demising, and to the death of the other… The death of the other thus becomes again “first”, always first. It is like the experience of mourning that institutes my relation to myself and constitutes the egoity of the ego… The death of the other, this death of the other in “me”, is fundamentally the only death that is named in the syntagma “my death” (p. 76).

Levinas’ account of death relies on the idea of the irreducibility of the Other (the Other’s infinity), thus, maintains that the Other’s death is prior in the responsible human life –through caring for the Other, experiencing through the Other, I construct my utmost selfhood. For Chanter (2001) Heidegger does not seem to explore the connotations of the issue of death on the basis of substitution. She writes that Heidegger, by prioritising the idea of the individualisation of Dasein through death, misses the moral issue of the act of substitution of oneself for another.

Heideggerians will object that in understanding death as the supreme individualization of Dasein Heidegger does not rule out the possibility that Dasein might choose to go to its death for another, but the objection misses Levinas’s point. That Dasein might make the choice of sacrificing its life for another does not alter the basic assumption that governs Heidegger’s analyses of death. He still posits Dasein’s freedom as basic, and this is precisely what the Other, according to Levinas, puts in question. As Taminiaux says, “One of the major teachings of Levinas’s early thought is to show … that fundamental ontology sins against the other … because the very notion of being-with, instead of breaking with solitude, merely expands it”.

This is why solitude is an issue for Levinas, in the sense that it denotes an enclosement, even a barrier between me and the other: “I repudiate the Heideggerian conception that views solitude in the midst of a prior relationship with the other. Though anthropologically incontestable, the conception seems to me ontologically obscure” (quoted in Chanter, 2001, p. 106).

Freedom and Passivity

Heideggerian subject, attaining authenticity in being-towards-death, is resolute and free towards death in its authenticity, and through anticipation Dasein recognises that it is lost in das Man:

anticipation reveals to Dasein its lostness in the they-self, and brings it face to face with the possibility of being itself, primarily unsupported by concernful solicitude, but of being itself, rather, in an impassioned freedom towards death –a freedom which has been released from the illusions of the “they”, and which is factical, certain of itself, and anxious (BT, 267).

The Levinasian subject is not “toward” death. It suffers – it is haunted by the phantom of death, “as that which comes to me and not I to it” (Cohen, 2006, p. 20). What we encounter in Levinas, is not the impassioned freedom towards death, but the idea of passivity: “in the face of death one is no longer able to be able” (ibid.). So, “death, for Levinas, is not facing up to and grasping a possible future, it is rather to face the impossibility of a future. It is therefore debilitating rather than strengthening” (ibid.).

Suffering, thus, represents the ultimate passivity of the subject in the face of death: “The suffering of the recollected being, which is patience in the primary sense, pure passivity, is at the same time openness upon duration, postponement, within this suffering. In patience the imminence of defeat, but also a distance in its regard, coincide.” (TI, p. 165).

The subjectivity of a subject is vulnerability, exposure to affection, sensibility, a passivity more passive still than any passivity, an irrecuperable time, an unassemblable diachrony of patience, an exposedness always to be exposed the more, an exposure to expressing, and thus to saying, thus to giving. Saying, the most passive passivity, is inseparable from patience and pain, even if it can take refuge in the said, finding again in a wound the caress in which pain arises, and then the contact, and beyond it the knowing of a hardness or a softness, a heat or a cold, and then the thematization (OB, p. 50).

Suffering in Levinas marks the limit, the closest one is to death –it is the minimal distance between me and the absolute other, whereas in Heidegger’s being-towards-death denotes a continuity of my relationship with death as something affirmed and ownmost. In Levinas, I cannot accept death or affirm it this way because if I can, I am trapped in solipsistic self-realisation.

Anxiety and Horror

For Heidegger, the mood which properly allows Dasein to be disclosed to itself is anxiety. Anxiety provides the fundamental existential conception of Dasein’s being and presents the world as finite. It is, for instance, different from the mood of fear, which Heidegger explains as inauthentic in his ontological-existential analysis, as fear is directed at a definite object whereas the object of Angst is always indefinite, a nothing. As such, does not have the capacity to suspend Dasein face to face with death as its own utmost possibility. the state-of-mind which can hold open the utter and constant threat to itself arising from Dasein’s ownmost individualized Being, is anxiety. In this state-of-mind, Dasein finds itself face to face with the “nothing” of the possible impossibility of its existence. Anxiety is anxious about the potentiality-for-Being of the entity so destined [ des so bestimmten Seienden ], and in this way it discloses the uttermost possibility. Anticipation utterly individualizes Dasein, and allows it, in this individualization of itself, to become certain of the totality of its potentiality-for-Being. For this reason, anxiety as a basic state-of-mind belongs to such a self-understanding of Dasein on the basis of Dasein itself. Being-towards-death is essentially anxiety (BT, 266).

The subject, thus, is able to conceive its Being-in-the-world, thrownness and nullity within the state of mind of Angst, and through a crisis in meaning-making, reaches freedom towards death. What anxiety gives is both the presence as existence and the realisation of a futurity of not existing. Dasein’s Being is care which is constituted by facticity (thrownness), existence (projection), and falling. “As being, Dasein is something that has been thrown; it has been brought into its ‘there’, but not of its own accord” (BT, 284). Anxiety “amounts to the disclosedness of the fact that Dasein exists as thrown Being towards its end” (252). Dasein faces the possibility of its termination, as well as its factical possibilities. “Dasein is revealed to itself as Being-possible. It is not the fear of death, but anxiety in front of being-able-not-to-be. In anxiety, Dasein is anxious about its own Being as Being-in-the-world, because it becomes aware of its being-able-not-to-be” (Keikhaee & Bell, 2016, p. 7). Anxious Dasein sees its world and experiences it as being uncanny. “The inability to put one’s finger on the source of Angst is one of the debilitating features of this state of being. In the mood or feeling of Angst there is a movement similar to the Greek notion of nature, the swinging back and forth between presence and absence” (Schroeder, 1996, p. 93). The meanings produced by the significance of das Man collapse, as Dasein is ushered into a new opening. Through the alienation of anxiety, Dasein understands itself as fallen, becomes an individual, singular and unique in its own possibilities. In short, anxious Dasein faces itself, its possibilities, and its own termination – the subject-object encounter. However, for Levinas, one cannot efface the negative character of death in anxiety:

Rational hope is projected nontemporally into the domain of pure nothingness, which it is impossible to mistake [ méconnaître ] in the lived experience of being-toward-death (…) but which it is also impossible to know, to equal, and to contain. This is a domain in which the relation is in no sense an adequation. A nothingness impossible to think. When one thinks it, it is immediately necessary to unsay it [ le dédire ], that is, to signify it as a noema that is thinkable only “in quotation marks.” (GDT, p. 67).

For Levinas, the fear is not the possibility of absence per se, but the “presence of absence”, the il y a. Contesting the constitutive nothingness in Heidegger, Levinas replaces Dasein’s anxiety in the face of nothingness with horror in the face of the there is. The there is is not something that the subject traverses through death – death is powerless in the face of il y a. Levinas questions Heideggerian ontology which conceives evil as a deficiency and lack of being:

Is not the fear of Being just as originary as the fear for Being? It is perhaps even more so, for the former may account for the latter. Are not Being and nothingness, which, in Heidegger’s philosophy, are equivalent or coordinated, not rather phases of a more general state of existence, which is nowise constituted by nothingness? We shall call it the fact that there is. In it subjective existence, which existential philosophy takes as its point or departure, and the objective existence of the old realism merge. It is because the there is has such a complete hold on us that we cannot take nothingness and death lightly, and we tremble before them. The fear of nothingness is but the measure of our involvement in Being. Existence of itself harbors something tragic which is not only there because of its finitude. Something that death cannot resolve (EE, p. 20).

There is a certain neutrality and indifference to death. For Levinas, “horror is nowise an anxiety about death” (ibid). The il y a has no exists, it is cold and depersonalised. The human is naked in front of it, and in horror –not occupying a subjectivity or an identity, not knowing who she or he is, hence, it does not have “private existence” anymore. Horror is “a participation in the there is, in the there is which returns in the heart of every negation, in the there is that has ‘no exits.’ It is (…) the impossibility of death, the universality of existence even in its annihilation” (ibid.). Horror is associated with the night and the nocturnal. We experience horror as horror of the night as the il y a: “The rustling of the there is... is horror” (ibid.) and it is evoked in the night as an unfamiliar historical space, uncanny in its foreignness and indifference. Heidegerrian anxiety in the face of pure nothingness is met with the Levinasian horror of “being prey to, delivered over to something that is not a ‘something’”:

When night is dissipated with the first rays of the sun, the horror of the night is no longer defineable. The “something” appears to be “nothing.” Horror carries out the condemnation to perpetual reality, to existence with “no exists.” (…) We are opposing, then, the horror of the night, “the silence and horror of the shades,” to Heideggerian anxiety, the fear of being to the fear of nothingness. While anxiety, in Heidegger, brings about “being toward death,” grasped and somehow understood, the horror of the night ‘with no exits’ which ‘does not answer’ is an irremissible existence (ibid.).

Levinas’ conception of night time here (as present par excellence) has similarities with Nietzsche’s midday, the moment of the shortest shadow, the moment of a split when one becomes two: “Midday; moment of the shortest shadow; end of the longest error; high point of humanity; INCIPIT ZARATHUSTRA” (Nietzsche, 1997, p. 24). Zupančič conceived Nietzschean shortest shadow as the thing throwing its shadow upon itself, “thus becoming, at the same time, the thing and its shadow” (Zupančič, 2003, p. 27). In a similar manner, the Levinasian night with its dancing, insinuating shadows, hosts the horror of the asymptotic il y a.

When Levinas approaches the Heideggerian concept of nothingness as something to transcend, overcome, he also contests Being as still the mirror image of nothingness. In Heidegger, we start with Being “which is a content limited by nothingness” (EE, p. 64). Nothingness is understood as the demarcation of being, “as an ocean which beats up against it on all sides” (ibid.). Then Levinas asks: “But we must ask if ‘nothingness,’ unthinkable as a limit or negation of being, is not possible as interval and interruption; we must ask whether consciousness, with its aptitude for sleep, for suspension, for epoche, is not the locus of this nothingness-interval?” (ibid.). Consciousness as the “locus of this nothingness-interval” is what makes the subject an existent and a subject, thereby separating it from the il y a, singularising it. Horror threatens it as “a movement which will strip consciousness of its very ‘subjectivity.’ Not in lulling it into unconsciousness, but in throwing it into an impersonal vigilance, a participation” (ibid., p. 60). What ceases the subject’s horror is the relationship with and responsibility for the Other. Brian Schroeder (1996) sees the relation with the Other in this context, as one of comfort: “When the mother comforts the child in the middle of the night, the lonely terror of the previous moment vanishes. (…) The relation with the Other is one of comfort, not of alienation as it is in Hobbes, Hegel, and Sartre. The filial relation is paradigmatic of the relation between the self and the Other” (p. 94). On Escape reveals “the fundamental disposition manifesting being qua being” (OE, p. 15) as not anxiety but nausea. Like anxiety, the object/source of nausea is characterised as indeterminate –however what is encountered here is not “the simple lack of determinacy, but the essential impossibility of receiving a determination of some sort”; it is not “reducible to the determinacy of the object that caused it”; “lays bare the essential solitude of the being-there it strikes” and “manifests nothingness” (ibid.). These are the characteristics nausea shares with anxiety, but it differs from it as to how it relates to the idea of nothingness and manifest nothingness differently: In the nothingness of anxiety there alone rises up the original opening of the being as such, that means: that it is a being and not nothing. This “and not nothing,” added by us in what followed, is not a subsidiary explication, but indeed what makes possible in advance the manifestation of the being in general. The essence of this nothingness, which is our original experience of negation, lies in that it carries, before all else, the Dasein before beings as such (ibid., p. 20).

Thus, anxiety carries us to “the heart of the essential knot of being and beings, to the heart of the ontological difference” (ibid.), whereas nausea “manifests the nothing as being itself, and manifests being as the very act of positing itself, as the pure act of affirming itself. Nausea manifests the nothing as the pure fact of being” (ibid., p. 23). Nausea captures the body as “the passion of the return of nothing”. “A quest for the way out, this is in no sense a nostalgia for death because death is not a exit, just as it is not a solution. The ground of this theme is constituted-if one will pardon the neologism-by the need for excendence” (OE, p. 54) and “escape will not appear to us as a flight toward death or as a stepping outside of time” (ibid. 57). The body experiences nausea in the face of nothing encountered as pure being, being with no exists, the ultimate entrapment. Death is forever future, postponed, and humans live in the meantime, and this instant where meaning takes place: “The, will, already betrayal and alienation of itself but postponing this betrayal, on the way to death but a death ever future, exposed to death but not immediately, has time to be for the Other, and thus to recover meaning despite death” (TI, p. 236). The absolute futurity of death in Levinas is ultimately the transcendent futurity of the Other, of whose face reveals infinity.

And with this signification we shift from phenomenology to ethics, because for Levinas inter-subjectivity, the relation to the other person, my relation to you, is first significant as an ethical relation. Nothing could be farther from the ontological analysis of Heidegger which left ethics and other persons behind as merely ontic or inauthentic (Cohen, 2006, p. 34).

Regarding the question of death, one sees the Levinasian ethical edifice attempting to free meaning from the significance of Heideggerian ontological difference –by reversing the “possibility of impossibility” as “impossibility of possibility”, Levinas prioritises the break from the pair of being and/or nothingness. “Death in Heidegger is an event of freedom, whereas for me the subject seems to reach the limit of the possible in suffering” (quoted in Chanter, 2001, p. 41). This is why the Levinasian instant as a naked urgency appear as the il y a, and existing is prior to living in the world. The subject experiences horror in the face of the there is which comes before any experience of the world, and to which death not a solution, and finds its reflection in the transcendent futurity of the Other. Being-toward-death in Heidegger essentially conceives the subject as virile and free, whereas Levinas provides “an account of subjectivity that remains open to the other, an account that privileges alterity over sameness, responsibility over freedom, infinity over totality” (ibid., p. 42). In dying for the Other, Levinas sees the ultimate morality and ethical subjectivity. Thus, with the ethical turn, Levinas enters and provides a broader philosophical space within which a multifaceted account of death is revealed.


Chanter, T. (2001) Time, Death, and the Feminine – Levinas With Heidegger, Stanford University Press.

Cohen, Richard A. “Levinas: thinking least about death—contra Heidegger”, Springer Link, Available at: (Accessed: 10 May 2020).

Critchley, S. (2014) “Originary Inauthenticity”, Between Levinas and Heidegger, ed. John E. Drabinski & Eric S. Nelson, NY: Suny Press.

Derrida, J. (1993) Aporias, trans. Thomas Dutoit, Stanford University Press.

Heidegger, M. (2001) Being and Time (BT), Martin Heidegger, trans. John Macquarrie & Edward Robinson, Blackwell.

Levinas, E. (2001) Existence and Existents (EE), Emmanuel Levinas, trans. Alphonso Lingis, Duquesne University Press. (2000) God, Death, and Time (GDT), trans. Bettina Bergo, Stanford University Press. (2001) On Escape (OE), trans. Bettina Bergo, Blackwell. (2007) Totality and Infinity (TI), trans. Alphonso Lingis, Duquesne University Press.

Nietzsche, F. (1997) Twilight of the Idols, trans. Richard Polt, Cambridge: Hackett.

Schroeder, B. (1996) Altared Ground – Levinas, History, and Violence, NY: Routledge Keikhaee, A. & Bell S. “On the Concept of Anxiety in Heidegger’s Thought”, (Accessed: 10 May 2020).

Winkler, R. (2018) Philosophy of Finitude – Heidegger, Levinas, and Nietzsche, Bloomsbury.

Zupančič, A. (2003) The Shortest Shadow, Nietzsche’s Philosophy of The Two, MA: MIT Press.


1 Regarding the Jemeinigkeit of death, Winkler also points out the ambiguous character of death a singularising event: “I am not sure that it is accurate to say that it individuates Dasein. An individual, in the strict sense, denotes an indivisible something like an atom, and Dasein is not an individual in that strict sense, whether as soul, substance, ego or person” (ibid.).

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Relating to Mortality. The Question of Death in Levinas and Heidegger
Staffordshire University
63 (70 being distinction)
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ISBN (Book)
relating, mortality, question, death, levinas, heidegger
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Ilgin Yildiz (Author), 2019, Relating to Mortality. The Question of Death in Levinas and Heidegger, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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