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Badiou's Deleuze

JON ROFFE
Copyright Date: 2012
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt130h9rv
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    Badiou's Deleuze
    Book Description:

    Badiou's Deleuze presents the first thorough analysis of one of the most significant encounters in contemporary thought: Alain Badiou's interpretation and rejection of the philosophy of Gilles Deleuze. Badiou's reading of Deleuze is largely laid out in his provocative book, Deleuze: The Clamor of Being. Badiou's Deleuze presents a detailed examination of Badiou's reading and argues that, while it fails to do justice to the Deleuzean project, it invites us to reconsider and reassess Deleuze's power to address the ultimate concerns of philosophy. Badiou's Deleuze analyses the differing metaphysics of two of the most influential recent continental philosophers, whose divergent views have helped shape much contemporary thought.

    eISBN: 978-0-7735-9468-5
    Subjects: Philosophy

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. ABBREVIATIONS
    (pp. ix-x)
  4. 1. THE HISTORY OF A DISJUNCTIVE SYNTHESIS
    (pp. 1-5)

    Over what were to be the final years of his life, Gilles Deleuze engaged in a long written correspondence with Alain Badiou. Badiou, in the light of hismagnum opus Being and Event(L’Être et l’événement), published in 1988, had come to see Deleuze’s philosophical project as the closest among those of his contemporaries to his own, and in turn saw Deleuze as his key rival in the attempt to present a philosophy of multiplicity and immanent being. This correspondence, unfortunately never published owing to Deleuze’s dissatisfaction with its abstract tone (DCB 6/14), concluded at the end of 1994, shortly...

  5. 2. IS DELEUZE A PHILOSOPHER OF THE ONE?
    (pp. 6-23)

    The claim that orients Badiou’s entire reading of Deleuze is infamous: “This philosophy is organized around a metaphysics of the One” (DCB 17/30). As philosopher of the One, Badiou claims that Deleuze has for the most part been remarkably successful. We are dealing therefore not with a failed or impossible philosophical project, but one that Deleuze has more or less successfully executed on behalf of contemporary thought. The closing lines ofThe Clamor of Beinginvoke Deleuze as “truly a most eminent apostle” (DCB 102/150) of the Spinoza for whom Being is radically unary in nature. If, as I shall...

  6. 3. METHOD
    (pp. 24-42)

    As we have seen briefly in the previous chapter, Badiou’s central claim regarding Deleuze – that his philosophy is oriented around the thesis that Being is One – deviates substantially from a number of important moments in the latter’s work. However, the strength of Badiou’s argument is that the elaboration of this thesis takes place across a range of key concepts in Deleuze. In fact, these concepts mirror the four key concepts in Badiou’sBeing and Event:being (the One, the virtual), the event, truth and subject (thought). In other words, Badiou’s claim is not simply that Deleuze’s philosophy is...

  7. 4. THE VIRTUAL
    (pp. 43-79)

    The heart of Badiou’s reading of Deleuze is found in his reconstruction and critique of Deleuze’s virtual–actual distinction. Indeed, the assertion that “‘Virtual’ is without any doubt the principal name of Being in Deleuze’s work” (dcb 43/65) makes clear an important touchstone of Badiou’s reading, namely, that while he thinks that Deleuze’s philosophy unfolds by way of a series of hierarchical pairs, these pairs are organized hierarchically. As a result, it is no surprise to find numerous repetitions of the claims about the virtual–actual distinction throughoutThe Clamor of Being, even when it is not this distinction as...

  8. 5. TRUTH AND TIME
    (pp. 80-103)

    Badiou’s discussion of the themes of time and truth constitutes the most peculiar moment in his study of Deleuze. This discussion, found in chapter five ofThe Clamor of Being, is structured around a surprising string of equations such that, by the end of the chapter, the following terms have all been posited as synonymous: time, truth, the virtual, atemporal eternity, Relation and the One. Here, my concern will be less to argue against this bold string of equations, but rather to deal with the central link: the equation of time and truth. We must then discover, at least schematically,...

  9. 6. THE EVENT IN DELEUZE
    (pp. 104-127)

    In a late interview, Deleuze claims that “I’ve tried in all my books to discover the nature of events; it’s a philosophical concept, the only one capable of ousting the verb ‘to be’ and its attributes” (N 141).¹ As we have seen, however, Badiou is manifestly correct in asserting that Deleuze’s philosophy is wedded to ontology, primarily with respect to two themes, as we have seen: those of the univocity of being and of the virtual. We have also seen a great deal of evidence in Deleuze’s own work to support this. Furthermore, it is not untilThe Logic of...

  10. 7. THOUGHT AND THE SUBJECT
    (pp. 128-159)

    In the methodological passages near the start ofThe Clamor of Being, Badiou argues that any familiarity with Deleuze’s thought will reveal that “one could draw up an endless list of the conceptual couples that are organized according to this paramount formal opposition of the active and the passive”, and claims that “this duality clearly runs throughout Deleuze’s entire work” (DCB 33/52). For Badiou, though, this level of organization of the Deleuzean text must, however, only be treated as rhetorical or preliminary in nature. Thus he adds that “The active/passive duality indisputably exercises a strong influence on Deleuze's philosophical language...

  11. 8. A SINGULAR PALIMPSEST
    (pp. 160-162)

    This book has been prosecuted in the vein of an adversarial trial. At issue has been neither the correctness of Deleuze’s philosophy, nor indeed that of Badiou, but rather the evidence in Deleuze’s philosophy to support the reading offered of his work by Badiou inThe Clamor of Beingand the texts related to it. Or, better, since it has no recourse to the moral and imperial tone of the ideal of judgement, what has been pursued is a partial set of enquiries orqueries. These queries have concerned a list of issues and concepts, a set of cases: being,...

  12. NOTES
    (pp. 163-188)
  13. BIBLIOGRAPHY
    (pp. 189-194)
  14. INDEX
    (pp. 195-196)