Ullrich Haase – on Heidegger, Ecology, Nature, and Technology

podcast update

This episode of the BSP Podcast sees Ullrich Haase presenting a paper from our 2022 annual conference, ‘Engaged Phenomenology II’.

Season 6 episode 134: 8 May 2024

Season 6 continues with another keynote presentation from our 2022 annual conference, Engaged Phenomenology II: Explorations of Embodiment, Emotions, and Spatiality.

Listen to this episode on the BSP’s Podbean site

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Ullrich Haase
‘Is Heidegger’s Other Thinking necessarily an Ecological Thinking? Reflections on the Absence of Nature and the Destiny of Technology’

This year saw the 50th anniversary of The Limits of Growth, the publication by the Club of Rome, which for many was the trigger of the birth of climate activism. The message was that action on global warming now was necessary immediately – but nothing much happened until the Fridays for Future movement, which appeared as if it just occurred to us that there might be a problem. About a decade after the publication of The Limits of Growth, parts of the ecological movement wondered why nothing happened and turned towards the critique of technological rationalism, following Nietzsche and Heidegger, to provide an explanation for that inaction and to open the way for a more radical ecological thinking. While the insight that nothing would change as long as ecology would either be swallowed up by the same technological rationalism that caused the crisis, nor by some middle-class Europeans ‘moving off grid’, did give rise to more than a decade of engagement, what in turn has happened to this movement, which claimed that ecology can only be meaningful when joining postmodernism’s turn to language, while also claiming that postmodernism is essentially an ecological thinking? Again, nothing. Instead, all we wonder about today is whether Heidegger was an antisemite or not. In this talk I will reflect on the reasons for which Heidegger’s other thinking has become so unpalatable in our age and why these reasons are the same that should still engage us with the problems of global heating and globalization and the critique of the feverish search for technical solutions to the problem of technology.

Biography: Ullrich Haase is Principal Lecturer at the Manchester Metropolitan University. His research centres on 19th and 20th Century German and French Philosophy, especially Hegel, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty, Derrida and Blanchot. He served as the editor of the Journal of the British Society for Phenomenology from 2005 to 2020.

Further Information:

This recording is taken from our Annual UK Conference 2022: Engaged Phenomenology II: Explorations of Embodiment, Emotions, and Sociality (Exeter, UK / Hybrid) with the University of Exeter. Sponsored by the Wellcome Centre, Egenis, and the Shame and Medicine project. For the conference our speakers either presented in person at Exeter or remotely to people online and in-room, and the podcast episodes are recorded from the live broadcast feeds.

The British Society for Phenomenology is a not-for-profit organisation set up with the intention of promoting research and awareness in the field of Phenomenology and other cognate arms of philosophical thought. Currently, the society accomplishes these aims through its journal, events, and podcast. Why not find out more, join the society, and subscribe to our journal the JBSP?