Resentment (or, to be fancy, ressentiment—signifying the technical Nietzschean definition for the term), is a horribly special emotion. If, for Heidegger, authentic boredom and anxiety fundamentally attunes us to the world, then resentment leads us eternally astray. Resentment is anti-life. It denials rather than affirms appearance. It is not hatred, anger, or envy, and differs … Continue reading Ressentiment


For Kierkegaard, repetition, in contrast to (the Platonic) remembrance, a forward drive. It awaits a certain fresh recurrence of the wondrous beginning. It is an anticipation of pure faith, incomprehensible but necessary. (Reminding one of K's more famous lines, "life can only be understood backwards but it must be lived forward.") Repetition is, in some … Continue reading Repetition

Collective Guilt

What excites me most in philosophy are the making and clarifying of concepts that are muddled in everyday thinking. Hannah Arendt is a great practitioner of this, and here is one of her brilliant distinctions. Following the Holocaust, Arendt found it necessary to draw a distinction between guilt and responsibility. Guilt is to deserve punishment. … Continue reading Collective Guilt