, Volume 44, Issue 1, pp 131-140
Date: 05 Mar 2011

The high stakes of temporality

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As the title suggests, Nicolas De Warren’s Husserl and the Promise of Time is an ambitious book. The author not only offers a rigorous reconstruction of Husserl’s phenomenology of time, but also endeavors to articulate what is philosophically promising about it. While careful reconstruction and interpretation of Husserl’s intricate time-analyses can also be found in other monographs and papers—for example, Kortooms 2002, to cite only the most complete one—an original and strong philosophical statement about why these analyses are interesting to philosophize in the present is something this reviewer has found exclusively in De Warren’s book.

It goes without saying that De Warren is not the first phenomenologist to have capitalized on Husserl’s time-analyses. Even a cursory look at the history of phenomenology reveals that virtually every phenomenologist after Husserl was in some way inspired by his work on time-consciousness. Heidegger’s Being and Time or Levinas’s Totality and Infinity ...