Tradition as Gelotopoesis: An Essay on the Hermeneutics of Laughter in Martin Heidegger

Cosmos and History : The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy 7 (2):179-203 (2011)
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Abstract

In this essay, I argue that laughter stands as the tricky possibility of the question of the meaning of Being, which ridiculously limits and gets limited by tradition beyond limitation. I introduce a hermeneutics of laughter and contend that the event of Ereignis receives its meaning from Gelotopoesis—the poetic act of laughter. Moreover, I claim that the echo of Gelotopoesis becomes the possibility of the transmission of tradition and is attested by a hypertonic boastfulness and a hypotonic irony. These two echoing tonalities question an unquestionable presence, which tradition never questions, in the most excessive manner so that it becomes the proper question of tradition once again.

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Tziovanis Georgakis
University of Cyprus

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