Vladislav Suvák


Professor of Philosophy, University of Prešov, Slovakia

(July 2017)


Foucault vs. Patočka: Care of the Self vs. Care of the Soul

The project is concerned with the fundamental question of Socratic ethics which were the focus of attention of many late-twentieth century thinkers. The main purpose of the project is to compare two influential interpretations of the ancient concept of epimeleia: Patočka’s reading of the Platonic concept of ‘care for the soul‘ (epimeleia tes psyches) with its epistemological and metaphysical connotations and Foucault’s reading of Socratic ‘care of the self’ (epimeleia heautou) as a permanent training of the self by the self.


Previous stays at the IWM:
August 2016, Guest
July 2015, Guest

1999, Junior Visting Fellow


The Essence of Truth (aletheia) and the Western Tradition in the Thought of Heidegger and Patocka

In this essay, I first try to sketch out Heidegger’s path concerning the question of truth and consider some possible criticism of it. Second, I focus our attention on Heidegger’s rethinking of the metaphysical tradition which, according to Heidegger, has reached its end. In this context we will examine the thinking of Jan Patocka. I think Patocka is one of the most interesting, even if little-known and misunderstood, readers of Heidegger’s texts. My hope here is to show, first, how we can understand Heidegger’s ideas better through the writings of Patocka and, second, that by considering Patocka’s appropriation of Heidegger, which emphasizes the need to think with and even beyond Heidegger, we can avoid becoming mere ‘Heideggerians.’
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