In recent years there has been a great deal of talk about a possible death of art. As the title of Heideggers The Origin of the Work of Art suggests, the essay challenges such talk, just as it in turn is challenged by such talk, talk that is supported by the current state of the art-world. It was Hegel, who most profoundly argued that the shape of our modern world no longer permits us to grant art the significance it once possessed. Hegels proclamation of the end of art in its highest sense shadows this commentary, as it shadows Heideggers essay. Heideggers problematic turn from the philosopher Hegel to the poet Hölderlin is born of the conviction that we must not allow Hegel to here have the last word. At stake is the future of art. But more importantly, if we are to accept Heideggers argument, at stake is the future of humanity. But all who are eager to find in Heideggers essay pointers concerning where not just art, but we should be heading, should be made wary by Heideggers politicizing of art and aestheticizing of politics. Both remain temptations that demand a critical response. This commentary demonstrates the continued relevance of Heideggers reflections.

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