Auster's Leviathan : when the "voice of conscience" calls out

Source document: Brno studies in English. 2020, vol. 46, iss. 2, pp. 137-157
Extent
137-157
  • ISSN
    0524-6881 (print)
    1805-0867 (online)
Type: Article
Language
English
Abstract(s)
The "voice of conscience", in Heidegger's philosophy, refers to the moment of self-realization when the existentially authentic individual as Dasein recognizes the range of possibilities in any given situation for which he/she is responsible. It is only the authentic individual who hears the call of conscience by having chosen to hear it. The call, if heard, reveals to Dasein the possibilities it has before it to take proper action based on the situation to lead a better life, not only for itself but also for others. Benjamin Sachs in Leviathan, in representing the Heideggerian Dasein, chooses to hear his conscience and cries out against the political corruption which his fellow American citizens ignore to hear. As an authentic individual, in the tradition of Heidegger's Dasein, Ben rebels against communal ignorance under political tyranny following the rise of his political conscience, an uprising which is existential in principle and radical in practice, giving Auster's novel an Existential-Marxist tone.
Document
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