Think Again: Alain Badiou and the Future of Philosophy (Athlone Contemporary European Thinkers)

Think Again: Alain Badiou and the Future of Philosophy (Athlone Contemporary European Thinkers)

Language: English

Pages: 286

ISBN: 0826459072

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Slavoj Š ZiŠzek is not alone in thinking that Alain Badiou's recent work is "the event of contemporary philosophy." Think Again, the first publication of its kind, goes a long way towards justifying his assessment. Badiou is nothing if not polemical and the most suitable way to approach his philosophy is precisely through the controversies it creates. This book, which opens with an introduction aimed at readers new to Badiou's work, presents a range of essays which explore Badiou's most contentious claims in the fields of ontology, politics, ethics and aesthetics.

Alain Badiou has devised perhaps the only truly inventive philosophy of the subject since Sartre. Almost alone among his peers, Badiou's work promises a genuine renewal of philosophy, a subject he sees as conditioned by innovation in spheres ranging from radical politics to artistic experimentation to mathematical formalization. Slavoj Š ZiŠzek is not alone in thinking that Alain Badiou's recent work is "the event of contemporary philosophy." Think Again, the first publication of its kind, goes a long way towards justifying his assessment. Badiou is nothing if not polemical and the most suitable way to approach his philosophy is precisely through the controversies it creates. This book, which opens with an introduction aimed at readers new to Badiou's work, presents a range of essays which explore Badiou's most contentious claims in the fields of ontology, politics, ethics and aesthetics.

Aesthetics and Politics: Debates Between Bloch, Lukacs, Brecht, Benjamin, Adorno

Clever Girl: Elizabeth Bentley, the Spy Who Ushered in the McCarthy Era

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

pure presence without the state of representation. We should indeed gather the strength to ‘take over’ and assume power, rather than merely persist in the safety of the oppositional stance. If one is not ready to do this then one continues to rely on state power as that against which one defines one’s own position. What this means at the ontological level is that, ultimately, we should reject Badiou’s notion of mathematics (the theory of pure multiplicity) as the only consistent ontology or

are at once similar in terms of their emergence procedure, and absolutely independent of one another. Although I can do no more than raise the question here, this would add further interest to a closer comparison, which Badiou has not to my knowledge undertaken (even in his 1994 lecture on the Tractatus),23 with other radically egalitarian semantics and quasi-ontologies, such as those of Frege and Wittgenstein, which do not in my view imply even the least degree of ontological reduplication or

the heretical point in contemporary philosophy to which I made allusion at the beginning, and which therefore cannot be used in an absolutely arbitrary fashion? I suggest that this historicity lies in the juxtaposition of the following moments, which are like so many stages in an abstract or typical narration, and which are therefore subtly out of step with the ‘dialectical’ prototype of Plato’s cave but also, and whether we like it or not, with the movement of a ‘negation of a negation’ (the

sees both ontology’s essential moment and its impasse, Badiou, in order to avoid this dead-end, is driven to write: ‘we must conclude that the one, which is not, exists only as an operation. In other words: there is no one, there is only the counting-as-one’ (EE 32). It seems clear to me that the project of a pure ontology (an intrinsic theory of being as being) would stumble here with its very first step, were one to ask oneself this ‘preliminary’ question: what is it to operate? Who operates

that the subject who constitutes him/herself through an ethical investment is already part of a situation and of the lack inherent in the latter. Every situation deploys a symbolic framework without which even the event would have no meaning; the lack implies that, since the symbolic order can never be saturated, it cannot explain the event out of its own resources. ‘Events’ in Badiou’s sense are moments in which the state of the situation is radically put into question; but it is wrong to think

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