Nicholas Blake is a mature age, part-time PhD student in the philosophy program at the Australian National University (Canberra, Australia). He has an undergraduate degree majoring in mathematics and English literature, and masters degrees (MLitt and MPhil) in philosophy. His research interests focus on Heideggerian philosophy and its relevance to theories of organisation and management.
Nicholas Blake was awarded the Iain Brash prize for this essay.
While acknowledging recent efforts to recognise the genuinely ontological aspects of Georg Simmel’s philosophy of life (and especially its links to the later fundamental ontology of Martin Heidegger), this paper focuses on one seemingly important ontological implication of some specific societal claims made by Simmel that has previously received minimal attention.
By reading these claims as entailing a kind of ontological 'space' within which an individual attempts to mediate between social roles, this paper seeks to return attention to those contextually immediate interests which underpin the fulfilment of those social roles that foundationally shape our conception of the present 'now'. In doing so, this paper considers the other extreme, as it were, of the temporalising structure which is the focus of a more traditional understanding of Heideggerian 'authentic' temporality.