On Heidegger’s tool analysis


We have been fortunate here at ANTHEM to be treated a number of times in recent years to Graham Harman’s uncanny ability to abstract and summarise. He has just done it again, this time summarising his own philosophical position on his Object-Oriented Philosophy blog. At the same time in this post Harman also provides a very concise summary of his unorthodox reading of Heidegger’s tool analysis, which first appeared in Tool-Being (2002), and more recently in Heidegger Explained (2008). Harman draws on Whitehead and Leibniz to reinterpret Heidegger’s famous distinction between the ready-to-hand and present-at-hand, which in a number of ways brings him very close to actor-network theory (although some fundamental differences between his position and that of Bruno Latour remain, as he makes it clear). Highly recommended to anyone intrigued by the rift between (Heideggerian) phenomenology and ANT.

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