This paper sets out to explore what, for Heidegger, gives anxiety such revelatory power. I would especially like to pay attention to Heidegger’s distinction of anxiety and fear, to further stress anxiety’s unique revelatory power. Furthermore, I will address how Heidegger’s analysis of anxiety and moods generally (an ontological analysis) is distinct from what is understood by moods in the empirical (and ontic) discipline of psychology. Heidegger’s analysis of anxiety in Being and Time bridges the first half of the work with the second half of the work. In short, Heidegger needs a mood to allow for an analysis of Dasein, Heidegger’s technical term for the kind of being that humans have, in its wholeness, not simply in its inauthentic, everyday existence, as is examined in Division One of Being and Time. The world as a whole stands before Dasein in anxiety like in no other mood, for all other attunements aid Dasein in its engagement with the world, not in pulling away from it. The structures of Dasein Heidegger describes in the latter half of Being and Time, particularly guilt, the call of conscience, and resoluteness, manifest themselves through anxiety. As Heidegger further refines and reformulates Dasein’s existential structures in the second half of Being and Time, we see anxiety manifest in one of Heidegger’s most well-known concepts: being-towards-death.
Whalen, John T.
"Anxiety, the Most Revelatory of Moods,"
Akadimia Filosofia: Vol. 1
, Article 8.
Available at: http://fordham.bepress.com/apps/vol1/iss1/8