Failures of Understanding

December 4, 2014, 12:15pm - 1:45pm
St Mary's University College, Twickenham

United Kingdom

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St Mary’s University, Philosophy Department

Royal Institute of Philosophy Public Lecture

Dr Roxana Baiasu

Associate Member of the Faculty of Philosophy, Oxford University, and Birmingham University

Failures of Understanding

Thursday 4th December 2014 5.15-6.45pm, followed by a drinks reception

Senior Common Room, St Mary’s University, Twickenham


This lecture is concerned with certain puzzles to which Heidegger’s approach to speech phenomena in Being and Time gives rise. More specifically, the discussion focuses on a central claim of Heidegger, the claim that understanding and speech are equally basic and mutually dependent in the constitution of our making sense of what there is. I argue that Heidegger cannot consistently establish this claim. The inquiry also shows something very significant about the finitude of understanding. There are two main parts or sides of the argument: a phenomenological discussion of listening to one another in a speech context, and a conceptual investigation concerning the relationship between understanding and speech.

About the Speaker

Roxana Baiasu is Associate Member of the Philosophy Faculty, Oxford University, Visiting Lecturer and Teaching Fellow at Birmingham University. Prior to this she was a lecturer at the Universities of Vienna and Leeds, and a Leverhulme Fellow at Sussex University. She is writing in the area of Post-Kantian metaphysics and epistemology. She edited (with G. Bird and A.W. Moore) Contemporary Kantian Metaphysics Today: New Essays on Time and Space (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012), and published in, among others, The Southern Journal of Philosophy, IJPS, Research in Phenomenology and Sophia.


All lectures are free and open to the public without registration. Lectures start at 5.15pm and last for 45 minutes, with 45 minutes for questions and discussion. This is then followed by a wine reception.


Senior Common Room, St Mary’s University, Waldegrave Road, Strawberry Hill, Twickenham TW1 4SX Directions to the University can be found at

For further information please contact: Dr Marije Altorf – [email protected]

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