In This Article Expand or collapse the "in this article" section Martin Heidegger: Later Works

  • Introduction
  • Biographies
  • Introductory Literature
  • Journals and Book Series
  • Reference Works
  • General Studies and Research Anthologies

Philosophy Martin Heidegger: Later Works
Tobias Keiling
  • LAST MODIFIED: 27 October 2021
  • DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780195396577-0426


Martin Heidegger (b. 1889–d. 1976) is a central figure in 20th century philosophy. Especially in his early works, most notably Being and Time (1927), Heidegger critically continues the tradition of phenomenology inaugurated by Edmund Husserl (b. 1859–d. 1938). Heidegger’s philosophy has also been a major influence on a number of important philosophers in their own right, including Hans-Georg Gadamer (b. 1900–d. 2002), Maurice Merleau-Ponty (b. 1908–d. 1961), Hannah Arendt (b. 1906–d. 1975), Paul Ricoeur (b. 1913–d. 2005), Michel Foucault (b. 1926–d. 1984), Jacques Derrida (b. 1930–d. 2004), and Richard Rorty (b. 1931–d. 2007). His work has also impacted other disciplines, such as theology, literary and cultural studies, art theory, and the theory of architecture. Heidegger is primarily known for his work in metaphysics and existential philosophy. However, Heidegger has made much-discussed contributions to a wide range of philosophical topics, including the study of numerous authors from the history of philosophy. The German edition of his collected works (Gesamtausgabe, or GA) includes published writings, lecture courses, and seminar as well as manuscripts, and is planned to hold over a hundred volumes. To manage this rich material, Heidegger’s philosophy is often divided into different periods. Although how to demarcate these periods is itself a matter of scholarly debate, Oxford Bibliographies divides his work in an early, middle, and later period. This entry treats the later period of his thought, beginning around 1945. Heidegger rarely comments directly on the Second World War, the Holocaust, and other events of 20th-century history. However, themes taken up in the later period, such as the discussion of cultural crisis and the philosophy of technology, can be seen as responding to these events. Heidegger’s later work is marked by a few important lectures and lecture series that were published and translated during Heidegger’s lifetime, and these should be the starting point for any reading. The major body of his writing, however, consists of manuscripts, notes, and course materials, which are more difficult to assess. Although the main focus of Heidegger’s philosophical concerns shifts, many themes continue to be relevant throughout his works. Also, scholars writing on Heidegger often take into account his development as a whole, and relevant literature may be treated in another entry. Thus, be sure to also check the entries on the early and middle period of Heidegger’s works when using Oxford Bibliographies. This bibliography aims to be inclusive with regard to schools of thought and interpretations of Heidegger. It is not exhaustive but rather an attempt to identify useful starting points for individual study within the more recent literature on Heidegger.


There are two standard biographies translated from the German: Ott 1993 focuses on Heidegger’s involvement with National Socialism; Safranski 1998 is a typical intellectual biography. For more biographical literature and literature on the interaction between Heidegger’s personal life and his philosophy, see the section “The Heidegger Controversy” in the entry “Martin Heidegger: Middle Works.”

  • Ott, Hugo. Martin Heidegger: A Political Life. New York: Basic Books, 1993.

    Presents the major events of Heidegger’s life, with a focus on his actions in support of National Socialism. The last chapter presents Heidegger’s attempt at a rehabilitation after the war. No discussion of Heidegger’s philosophical views.

  • Safranski, Rüdiger. Heidegger: Between Good and Evil. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1998.

    Well-written presentation of Heidegger’s life and thought in the context of 20th-century intellectual history. Heidegger’s life is presented as “a Dr. Faustus story,” the intellectual and political failure of a philosophical genius.

back to top

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content on this page. Please subscribe or login.

How to Subscribe

Oxford Bibliographies Online is available by subscription and perpetual access to institutions. For more information or to contact an Oxford Sales Representative click here.