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SubStance, Issue 120 (Volume 38, Number 3), 2009, pp. 92-112 (Article)
Published by University of Wisconsin Press DOI: 10.1353/sub.0.0057
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The Ethics of Truth: Ethical Criticism in the Wake of Badiou’s Philosophy
1. Badiou and the “Ethical Turn” The ethical turn in literary criticism took place in response to the supposed pitfalls of three dominant paradigms in the Humanities: positivism, neo-humanism and Marxism. Inspired mostly by the works of Emmanuel Levinas, Jacques Derrida and Jean-François Lyotard, it took the form of a reading practice that privileged heterogeneity, radical difference and, above all, the thought of an experience incommensurable to consciousness and language. The ethical turn was also in part invigorated by feminist criticism, gender studies and cultural studies, in their attempt to specify gender, racial, and cultural differences suppressed by more conventional approaches. The new century saw the most radical insights of ethical criticism being absorbed and neutralized by a bland “ethical ideology” that showed its true face after 9/11. Ethical ideology gave way to a discourse defending freedom and the spread of democracy by way of military intervention. What followed is well known: the renewal and re-implementation of the doctrine of National Security the US employed during the peak of the Cold War. This time, however there was no Latin American dictator as facilitator, but rather some European states—even if their collaboration went against the letter of the European Constitution—and the complicity of some Arab states that took matters into their own hands. These practices went along with a proliferation of legitimizing discourses in American academia, and with a media obsession with security. This situation made any discussion on alterity suspicious, and the Levinasian metaphor of the self as hostage to the other difficult to swallow. It might seem that we have passed beyond ethical criticism, that it has been neutralized and appropriated by current discourses. However, a cursory look at the reviews of the different strands of ethical criticism shows one crucial omission: Alain Badiou.1 I would like to propose that Badiou’s philosophy can help us inflect a different torsion to the ethical turn by moving away from some of the ideas that became domesticated by the “ethical ideology” and by asserting that the inventive act, art in general, and literature in particular, produces truths. 92
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SubStance #120, Vol. 38, no. 3, 2009
Truth has nothing to do with an object of knowledge. The event requires a name (or an image.Ethical Criticism and Badiou’s Philosopphy 93 The focus of this essay is Badiou’s thinking. cannot be described in terms of those very rules. If mathematics—and set theory in particular—provides the laws to approach the teeming and inconsistent multiplicity of being (which enables Badiou to prove the existence of an abnormal or illegal multiple). or a deduction of a protocol of fidelity to its consequences (Logiques des mondes). Language can access the multiple only by being forced—that is. it is a pure writing because it does not maintain a rapport to the real. but rather. and in the poem in particular) that functions as the trace of its vanishing passage.3 There where the event arises.2 Moreover. It proceeds from a decision and under the modality of the event. the subject. demands an act of nomination (Being and the Event). Badiou conceives of a dimension that escapes the grasp of language. but only to displace it each time by the throw of the dice of a non-deductible nomination. The event is lawless and appears as a supplement to a given situation. the event. Insofar as it “touches” the real. for two reasons that. the philosopher must pass through language. seem at odds with the question explored in this special issue. Nevertheless. a domain exists in which language has to be considered as something secondary. therefore. no. it is the real that is a fleeting trace of this writing. nor be included in a dire bien insofar as it always affirms established and accepted significations. There is something of an archi-poiesis that from Being and the Event up to Logiques des mondes governs the fidelity to the event. with the same force. For Badiou the matheme is the writing of the real. a figure that is in excess to the codes in question in the case of art in general. any other type of writing becomes impure. 38. Mathematical writing is not a trace of the real. a scandal for the dire bien. it subtracts itself from any type of relation. moreover the event subtracts itself from the order of meaning and. and as having a subordinated function.” makes its belated appearance. Vol. Ordinary language cannot provide an effective description of multiplicity. On the one hand. the absolute radical character of the event and its heterogeneous relation to the order of language.” the event’s name is an improper saying. What distinguishes Badiou from most of his contemporaries is that for him. and unlike Gilles Deleuze. As “poetic invention. at first. This formal operator bears witness to the impossible: the ontological status of the event that transgresses the very laws of being insofar as it belongs to itself. 2009 . He conceives philosophy as a process of rigorous deduction inflected by mathematics. on the other hand. since it is implicitly ruled by the prescription of the One. is something impossible to say. 3. The advent of an event therefore becomes a question SubStance #120. Mathematical writing is the real itself. and this. Badiou does not privilege invention. an operator of this sudden “irruption. the event can be named neither in terms of a preexisting lexicon. Badiou affirms. or ethics of truth. with reference.
no. and a “love of the unnamable” able to acknowledge that there are limits to the power of a truth and the work of naming. Vol. It thus involves a process of inquiry (enquête). Badiou’s untimely and strange Platonism values art precisely for producing truths that are proper to it (immanent). Badiou’s critique of ethical ideology. The former reminds us. 23). in turn. in a sort of neo-humanism. which in his most recent Logiques des mondes becomes an ethics of “living with an Idea. Ethics. 2009 . a process of fidelity to the consequences of the event. Fidelity is the central feature of Badiou’s ethics. if some strands of ethical criticism—especially in its AngloSaxon version that ended up. as well as its varieties in the Anglo-Saxon world: cultural relativism and identity politics.94 Gabriel Riera of an intervention. this does not mean that his thinking is unreceptive to any reflection on art and literature—that is. and at worst in skipping a series of theoretical difficulties that reduced or SubStance #120. art produces immanent truths that philosophy. finds its correlate in his positing of an ethics of truth. It is a process of continuing with a singular and concrete situation from the point of view of what is yet unknown—that is. formalizes in its effort to think the present. however. and isolate what escapes the established descriptions. at best. Finally. Badiou’s ethics is organized around the rare emergence of the same from the banal infinity of difference. from the perspective of the event that comes to supplement the situation.6 Unlike the ethics of respect for alterity and difference in which the other takes precedence over the same. but that also have a universal scope (generic).”5 In both cases ethics involves a break with doxa. a decision. 3. that “any attempt to make of ethics the fundament of thought and action is essentially religious” (Badiou. according to Badiou. Badiou has been adamant in his attack on what he calls the ethical ideology promoted in France by the Nouveaux Philosophes. On the other hand. compels the subject to think a world according to an unavailable principle (what has come to change it). Fidelity. therefore. since the subject must discriminate the new with the language of the old. Badiou’s subtractive ontology provides a rigorous elaboration of the consequences that an event brings into play—an ethics of truth.4 Badiou has gone as far as to develop an inesthetics—that is. 38. Unlike the Nietzschean postmodernist legacy that posits the value of art against the dreadfulness of truth. Although at first Badiou does not privilege invention in his philosophical system. This attack also targets the two dominant paradigms that have inspired the ethical turn of literary criticism: those of Emmanuel Levinas and Jacques Derrida. and fidelity. the inventive act broadly defined. a new regime for thinking the question of art beyond the closure of traditional aesthetics and modernist conceptions of its role. Far from it: Badiou is a thinker for whom art is one of the four conditions of philosophy.
Badiou’s critique of ethical ideology yields an ethics of truth rooted in a subtractive ontology. On one side stand the philosophers of immanence.8 Further. Maurice Blanchot. Undecidability. Derrida and Badiou both cipher the ethical moment in aporia and undecidibility. 2009 . no. For Badiou. A brief discussion of this ontology is necessary in order to frame Badiou’s ethics of truth and the way he stipulates its functioning in the sphere of art. These approaches took issue with Hegel’s thesis according to which difference. but the latter also privileges undecidibility as the necessary frame to instantiate a process of fidelity to the event and its truth. Vol. Being can only be said as a consistent multiplicity. the consequence of undecidability is that decisions become imperative. 87). who criticized the idea of identity and developed a discourse of separation and alterity. the philosophers of difference took as their point of departure—and as their target—Heidegger’s ontological difference. and consequently does not ground infinity in finitude. The philosophers of difference who have inspired the ethical turn took a stand against Hegel’s integration of difference as an inner moment of identity—as an identity conceived no longer as static but in constant movement. the French philosophical scene characterized itself by a virulent anti-Hegelianism. therefore.7 Badiou’s thinking not only subscribes to a radical form of anti-Humanism (he declares himself to be the most faithful follower of both Lacan and Foucault). There where Levinas finds the idea of alterity in “the situation described by Descartes in which the ‘I think’ maintains with the Infinite it can nowise contain and from which it is separated a relation called ‘idea of Infinity’” (Totality. Ontologies of difference were dominant during the twentieth century in Continental philosophy. 3. On the other side are those like Emmanuel Levinas and. For Gilles Deleuze this amounts to “the final and most powerful homage ever made to the venerable principle of identity” (Difference. the French “Nietzscheans” like Gilles Deleuze and Michel Foucault. but as a necessary path to encounter the new. but also manages to provide a series of answers to difficult issues. During the second half of the last century. Badiou thinks actual infinity through Cantor.Ethical Criticism and Badiou’s Philosopphy 95 plainly ignored the legacy of literary theory. The crux of Badiou’s philosophy is to propose an ethics of truth whose main prescription is a non-dogmatic imperative: “Decide from the point of view of what is undecidable”—a decision whose final goal is to stipulate the effects that the new brings upon a given structure. 48). the ontological SubStance #120. should not be understood as a barrier. opposition and contradiction are the different facets of the Absolute. According to Heidegger. up to a certain point. or difference between Being and entities. and consistencies are founded on decisions. In the end. 38. who rejected the idea of a dépassement of contradictions and of absolute knowledge. but rather shows the precedence of the former over the latter.
This explains. which leads Heidegger to equate metaphysics with an onto-theology. a thinking of difference. understood in the Nietzschean sense of world-play. There is play when a center is lacking. systematically shows that Heidegger remains caught in a “metaphysics of presence. but rather one of Being. a pre-comprehension of Being and an attitude toward entities. ontology. at the same time. when there is a void that makes any deployment possible. It is possible to say that insofar as Heidegger envisions difference as an effect of Being. 2009 . Ontological difference. speaks in terms of a simultaneous process of tracing and erasing that constitutes the trace.” which he calls différance. Heidegger’s conception of the ontological difference reinforces the presence of Being. It is Jacques Derrida who radicalizes Heidegger’s quest and who. Badiou can be included neither in the anti-Hegelian genealogy. nor in the lineage of difference. its need to posit the idea of a Supreme Being as a way of explaining the entities. at the same time.96 Gabriel Riera difference is metaphysics’ unthought. but also as a supplement in the sense of a representation. Derrida questions any idea of full presence and now. Instead Badiou privileges the multiple. c’est à dire comme ébranlement de l’onto-théologie et de la métaphysique de la presence” (Grammatologie. or archi-writing—a writing without any antecedent.10 For Badiou. 79). following Heidegger who writes Being “under erasure” (sous rature). This takes Derrida to sift Heidegger’s philosophy through Nietzsche’s filter and particularly through the idea that Being is a play of forces. insofar as it occupies the place of a signification that lacks. 3. is mathematics. The arrival of the archi-trace is also the advent of play: “On pourrait appeler jeu l’absence de signifié transcendental comme illimitation du jeu. a discourse in which both terms collapse. in turn. unlike Derrida’s. play. a signifier. 38. Signification becomes a movement of supplementarity: it happens in substitution of signification’s lack of fundament. the science of being as such.” the very onto-theology Heidegger wishes to dispense with in the first place. in the end. By playing Nietzsche against Heidegger. is the very root of human existence insofar as it entails.9 For Derrida. Derrida’s play implies the transformation of a passive or reactive nihilism (negation of life) into an active nihilism that is invention and creation. Derrida posits the idea of a difference older than “ontological difference. in turn. Math- SubStance #120. The notion that Being is written “under erasure” implies that there is no transcendental signifier and that its effacement amounts to the advent of an archi-trace. This limitless play requires a field of infinite substitutions in which each signified can become. his is not. no. results from the absence of a transcendental signifier. claims Heidegger. that should not be confused with a system of transcription. Vol. Derrida states that.
as well as the “vulgar” positivist version that sees philosophy superseded by the developments in the natural and human sciences. is unpresentable. However. Badiou rethinks the question of the ontological difference. Faced with this situation. itself real: it remains forever ideal.12 He specifically rejects the two inflections that the “end of philosophy” has taken in contemporary discourses: the Heideggerian version regarding the exhaustion of metaphysics. 38. 3. While for Hegel the negative is a hole—the void that the concept introduces in the real—for Badiou there is an irresoluble disjunction between the real and the concept. but this precariousness is of ontological character. Vol. Badiou takes issue with Hegel. event and subjectivity. The void is the conceptual feature most faithful to what is. his differend revolves precisely around the status of the void. He establishes a new relation between discourse and mathematical deduction by equating ontology and mathematics as the thinking that operates in the proximity of the disseminated nature of Being. in turn. for this reason. The pure multiple “in-consists” and. and not unlike the philosophers of difference. consequently. explains why for Badiou it becomes the proper name of Being. or the pure multiple that is inconsistent from the viewpoint of any structure since it cannot be counted-as-one. The void is what makes it possible to “attach” a situation to its being and. Badiou emphatically contests all affirmations concerning the “end of philosophy” and instead declares that philosophy operates in terms of the concepts of truth. embracing the real such as it presents itself. Nevertheless. Badiou’s Ontology and the “Ethics of Truth”11 Badiou responds to an age dominated by cultural relativism and skepticism by positing the existence of universal truths. A consistent presentation of what is otherwise sheer inconsistent multiplicity unfolds only at the ontical level. where a stable and normative conception tends to prevail. Insofar as it resists unification. SubStance #120. Nature’s precariousness results from its being founded on the void. it reveals itself as the void. 2009 . which means that Being makes room for singularities –the event. Against the partisans of philosophy’s demise Badiou argues that philosophy is possible and necessary. 2. inconsistent multiplicity underlies all presentation and is the condition of freedom. In fact. Concerning Heidegger. or unified. The void that the concept introduces in the real does not become. knows only the multiple of multiples.Ethical Criticism and Badiou’s Philosopphy 97 ematics. in its post-Cantorean inflection. no. in the Manifesto for Philosophy. but it does not present itself as such. The void enables one to say the presentation. truth and the subject. Badiou responds by stressing a classical aspect of philosophy: its systematicity.
All beings in their being are infinite by prescription—infinite in the secularized sense introduced by Cantor’s revolution. 38. Badiou posits that meaning is not the gift of Being. philosophy must subtract truths from the labyrinth of meaning. in Badiou’s ontology being is no longer an enigma but an underlying void attached to any entity. de-substantiates. Against Heidegger and any form of hermeneutics. This One. or counted-as-one. But what is the meaning of set theory once it is treated philosophically? A set is a presentation that allows us to see a structured multiple. politics. provides for Badiou the only rigorous articulation of such a pure multiplicity. These truths unfold in the conditions (science. of multiple elements. 2009 .98 Gabriel Riera Philosophy is neither a constructive nor a deconstructive practice for Badiou but the site where thinking seizes the truths or generic procedures of an epoch. It should be clear that Badiou’s ontology is not the application of set theory. Badiou contests the two traditional forms of understanding infinity (or the infinite under the regime of the One): as a boundless exteriority (Aristotle) and as a temporal ecstasy (the Romantic legacy). the SubStance #120. philosophy derives a series of directives with which to approach the teeming of things. and event to the dimension of non-being: the real that becomes possible when forced by means of a “discipline of time” and a “fidelity” to its incalculable “irruption.14 Contemporary mathematics. in turn. The consequence of Badiou’s move is that the concept of the finite is secondary. what we have instead is the paradoxical advent of meaning from what is a-significant As a configuration of thought. the infinite is unattainable. In this sense. Badiou develops his systematic ontology in Being and Event. insofar as it is retroactively produced by the infinite. Philosophy is not the truth: philosophy is what subtracts from any identity and plenitude. Fundamentally. but rather what he believes is left unthought by that theory. desacralizes any truth.”13 Unlike Heidegger’s. Inasmuch as it is not a number that one can arrive at by counting. nor as the Whole. in the end. it asserts a radical infinity beyond all possible proofs of construction. Badiou seeks to replace the Hegelian and Romantic interpretations of potential infinity and human finitude with the concepts of actual infinity and the event. Vol. 3. must organize them as what interrupts the regime of signification. Set theory establishes that the infinite is itself multiple and can neither be conceived as the One. Being is a pure inconsistent multiplicity composed. and it does so by means of an analytic procedure that equates mathematics with ontology. especially post-Cantorean set theory. no. Philosophy. where being refers to the order of the presentation of the pure multiple. and once thus seized. art and love) that enable philosophy to accomplish its act: to provide those truths with an articulation so as to exhibit their epochal compossibility.15 The axiom of infinity constitutes Badiou’s point of departure.
to establish the set of the parts or subsets of a set. The void is “that from which there is presentation” (Badiou. This means that the world is without totality and without God because no set of sets is available— remember Russell’s paradox and Borges’ fictions based upon it.” between “structure and meta-structure”(EE 149). for example. Ontology must describe the conditions that will allow moving beyond the state of a presentation toward a situation of pure presentation. Badiou plays with the political connotation of the word “state. is. 3. Badiou calls situation any multiplicity structured by a particular count or by a particular criteria of belonging and inclusion (two founding relations of the multiple). 38. It is precisely because of this splitting that signification unfolds. the occurrence that allows us to read the inconsistencies of the Ancien Régime. the being of this presentation is empty and subtracts itself from the dialectic of the one and the multiple. The result of counting is a meta-structure that designates the situation as One. The state (of the situation) prohibits the presentation of the void.” since it is the principle that intervenes to control excess. no. which is the fundamental element for any particularization.16 but without being included (counted or represented) in it. what serves to display the void and the chaos. The void is a universally included set that belongs to no one in particular. but a truth that cannot be named by the state of the SubStance #120. Knowledge or the language of the situation furnishes virtually infinite ways of arranging a situation’s part. L’être et l’événement. The objective order that the state of the situation thus guarantees accomplishes a violent inclusion whose effect is “the disjunction between presentation and representation. or as the state of a situation. enabling unity to these arrangements. unpredictable dimension of the event that interrupts the order of knowledge by attaching itself to the void of every situation. The axiom of the void thus plays a crucial role in Badiou’s ontology. The void is the “founding” principle of the world. but cannot provide a global. at the same time. Badiou subscribes to a radical and materialist infinitism for which there is no real difference between an element of the set and the set that contains it. 2009 . the act of presentation splits itself into representations. a kind of Urszene.Ethical Criticism and Badiou’s Philosopphy 99 structure. Signification therefore entails an impoverishment of the infinities. The event called “French Revolution.” which for Badiou functions as an archi-event. If it is true that presentation supposes a level of unity. but refers to a certain state of the presentation. It is the truth of the Ancien Régime. Signification is. However. has no being in itself. 68-71). It is the contingent. a limitation of an infinite multiplicity. Vol. as well as what bears witness that any situation goes from itself to a-beyond-itself. Although ontology presents the multiple. it is a limiting act that severs meaning from the inhuman prodigality of the multiple.
an operator able to establish an effective mechanism of connection must exist. consequently. “atonal music” is a series of chaotic sounds. an event arises as the inconsistency of Being that shatters the consistencies of presentation.17 The event is the supernumerary excess of the order of being that makes the production of a truth possible. Further. 2009 . An event is not a fact. those having a direct import for his ethics of truth. In what follows. no. and a new focus on the question of consistent presentations instead of the question of being in general. adæquatio). Because the event is always fleeting. for the Greek philosopher. it is a non-empirical. in particular. It is through this intervention that consensual and validated knowledge can encounter the real of a given situation. It is through the intervention of a subject (who is the after-effect of the event) on behalf of this truth that an event can be discerned and named as such.” in the case of Saint Paul. truths are also proper to the four conditions.100 Gabriel Riera situation called Ancien Régime. Further. nor the result of different productions of practices and discourses at a given time in history (Foucault). 38. the event is what makes possible a process of subjectivization. ephemeral and insubstantial passage that cannot be assigned to any stable element of the situation in which it takes place. a truth emerges as the outcome of a process in which a “generic subset” of a situation coalesces and is then sustained by a subjective fidelity to the event. the subject and the process of truth.” for Marxist-Leninist revolutionaries) from its operator or belated supplement: the subject.18 There has been a shift from ontology (set theory) to logic (category theory). Vol. rather. there is no subject in general. For Badiou. The event thus releases the virtual potentials of a given situation (EE 274). part two of Being and Event. Badiou’s system has gone through important modifications. Being the expression of the void SubStance #120. With the publication of Logiques des mondes. For Badiou a truth is clearly neither the correspondence between a subject and an object (homôiosis. the (un)veiling of Being (alêtheia). “October Revolution. These modifications also had an impact on how Badiou conceives the event. What must be stressed here is that the subject does not pre-exist the event but. I will summarily review the most significant shifts in Badiou’s system and. it demands an act of nomination (“Christ’s Resurrection. “Christ’s resurrection” is a fable) the language of the situation is unable to name it. only a subject of each of the generic procedures or conditions and. And since the truth of the event is indiscernible from within a given situation (for classical music. In other words. The latter consists in seizing the name of the event in order to make it intervene in a given situation. A truth is produced by the excessive arrival of an event of whose passage only a name remains. A truth is what results from the subjective process once the name of the event is put into circulation in a given situation. 3.
its dazzling passage SubStance #120. therefore.Ethical Criticism and Badiou’s Philosopphy 101 within the particular situation at hand. at the same time. a site is precarious and ephemeral. The event. and although it is a requisite for an event to appear. and therefore it lacks existence. Badiou defines the event as an “extraordinary multiple” or “ultra-One”. given that the event only belongs to itself. However.19 Ultimately. it is not the event’s cause. It produces an interruption since it opens a perspective from which to discern what a situation cannot know or grasp: that which is left unaccounted for by the situation’s meta-structure. The event’s modality of manifestation is that of the eclipse: it is a fading and fragile appearing that produces the dispersion of the site’s elements. The state of the situation cannot count the terms that make up this singular and abnormal multiple (for example. What is decisive for the subject is to inscribe the event within a situation to which it does not belong. 2009 . given that the event belongs to itself. no. the event is unfounded and autonomous in terms of the situation within which it arrives. Because of its intrinsic feature. In Badiou. The event is destined to a given situation and it confers a local extension to it (EE 196). 38. the event thus functions as a radical supplement to the indifferent multiplicity of Being. it is from the latter that the excessive type of multiples originate. a family of illegal immigrants whose members are unregistered and thus lack public status). Badiou calls evental site (site événémentiel) the singular multiple whose elements do not present themselves in a situation. points to the void or inconsistency out of which a situation holds together. but its idiosyncratic condition. 3. which means that the defining feature of the event is its self-belonging. therefore. What is excessive regarding the classes the state counts is neither one (the retroactive result of a structural operation) nor consistent: it is a nothing (rien). The event then is an unfounded and autonomous set or situation that subtracts itself from the axiom of foundation. the axiomatic of set theory defines the site of the inexistence that produces truths—the event. In Being and Event Badiou’s typology of being reveals the existence of a type of multiplicity that transgresses the laws of the axiomatic that were set to formalize it. A site is thus unclassifiable since its excess exceeds what the state designates as being a legitimate part of a situation. Vol. and is thus indiscernible from this very axiomatic. The axiomatic of set theory isolates two types of relations among multiplicities: belonging and inclusion. Moreover. the situation of the multiples of its own site and its own situation. A site is thus always in the position of internal exclusion in regard to the situation within which it is presented. insofar as the site belongs to the situation without being included in it. it is. The event is an exceptional multiple that is added to a given situation by tracing the passage of an interruption.
The name does not allow for the event’s disappearance to give way to a discourse whose grammar and syntax is grounded in the encyclopedic and classifying language of the state. This entails the regime of truth acquiring a double status too. The site is now conceived as a “reflexive multiple” and thus. Between the site and the event. the thinking of the event is neither ontological nor transcendental.” that it was its effect and its source. Vol. a mix of pure being and appearing and. 3. of its singularity. If in Being and Event the event’s “irruption” shattered the consistency of a presentation. so as to allow that which was inexistent to come into existence. Further. This modification can be seen in any genuine event: something or someone.102 Gabriel Riera leaves a remainder: a name. The supernumerary character of the event and its subjective naming implied that the subject was something more than the fragmentary aftermath to the event’s sudden “irruption. it produces a brutal transformation of a given regime of intensity. suddenly acquires a strong or maximum existential intensity. must redouble the ontological delimitation proposed in Being and Event with a logical characterization. Although it maintains its generic characteristic. the event modifies the rules of appearing. Therefore. In Logiques des mondes. there was a need to supplement the ontological description of the event with a logical description able to elucidate the temporality proper to the event. the event is a hybrid. in Logiques des mondes it produces a de-regulation in the logic of the world—a sort of transcendental malfunctioning or disruption. Logiques des mondes reintroduces a term that used to play a more decisive role in his Théorie du Sujet— destruction: something must disappear in order for an inexistent element to appear in the world. at the same time. the regime of truth produces the reconstruction of the whole set of rules by which things appear (by taking into account that something or someone that previously did not appear must appear now). a site is the fleeting revelation SubStance #120. In other words. Badiou unfolds the transformations that real change undergoes. Badiou’s logical characterization of the event takes the existential intensity with which real change endows a multiplicity as its point of departure. no. 2009 . consequently. insofar as it transgresses the laws of being. the event conserves its ontological character as a surging forth of the site in a moment of selfbelonging and. If in Being and Event supplementation was the only term that accounted for the rearrangement of transcendental correlations. whose value in a given world was null or weak. the only element by means of which it can survive its own disappearance.20 In Being and Event the event as Ultra-One was a problematic construction for the corresponding conception of a subject understood as fragment of the event. it is a multiple that belongs to itself. Therefore. 38. which explains why the specification of the site.
the major shift that takes place in Logiques des mondes consists in that the subject’s effective operation no longer concerns naming the event. SubStance #120.”21 Due to the site’s fleeting and vanishing nature. In order to fully grasp the implications of this shift I will first focus briefly on how the subject is conceived in Being and Event. less a constructed one. 2009 . Finally. For Badiou the subject is not a universal or given category. An event is a strong singularity that enables its consequences to exist maximally. By the latter. but rather “in imposing the legibility of a unified orientation” (LM 54). A site is a vanishing term: it appears only as disappearing. It is unthinkable apart from it. its true duration must be placed on the side of its consequences. which means that the logic of the site is the distribution of the degrees of intensity around a vanishing point. no. the site is the ontological figure of an instant. if it happens and when it happens —let’s remember that the subject is as rare as the event—only takes place in the wake of an event. Badiou calls the recognition by which the event testifies to its unexpected and incalculable arrival an intervention. Fidelity thus names a process that separates and discerns “the becoming legal of chance” (EE 257). A truth is thus what results from a subjective process once the subject puts the event’s name into circulation. In Badiou “subject” refers neither to a network of representations grounded in experience nor to the transcendental constitution of any possible object of experience. Vol. 38. that is. an evaluation of the intensity common to the appearing of two beings. It instead signals the linkage that brings together the event and fidelity. or the relation between subjectivization and the subjective process (EE 264). it appears only to disappear: “Self-belonging annuls itself as soon as it appears. since s/he only becomes subject thanks to the interrupting force and the arresting power of the event (EE 48). since there is no subject in general. Regarding Badiou’s theory of the subject. The intervention unleashes a “discipline of time” that controls the putting into circulation of the paradoxical multiple of the event (EE 232). neither a transcendental nor empirical subject. The subject does not pre-exist the event. or on the logical interpretation of the relation among the different degrees of intensity.Ethical Criticism and Badiou’s Philosopphy 103 of the void that haunts multiplicities. it is the only type of real change that brings into existence “the inexistence proper to the object-site” (LM 397). In Badiou there is no way of knowing beforehand whether someone is connected to a given event. Subjectivization. The problem consists in registering the consequences of the appearing. and is always the subject of a particular condition. 3. Badiou understands the subject’s seizure by the event’s “irruption.” as well as the act by which the subject gets hold of the event’s name in order to make it intervene in a given situation.
although the first one seems to be predominant. the modalities by which it sustains the void. therefore. its consequences are infinite. or as a finite instance of an infinite process. This occurs because subjective capacity amounts to drawing the consequences of a change and. it must be receptive to art’s essence. We are now in a position to approach Badiou’s inesthetics and to focus on his reflections on the specific status of the truths of art. which makes it difficult to conceive of subjective capacity in an immanent way. Badiou’s Inesthetics and The Truth of Art Badiou’s approach to the question of art oscillates between the ethics of truth’s two possible outcomes: the logic of naming and the logic of consequences. In Logiques des mondes the notion of consequence is bound to the subject and. as I mentioned in the previous section.104 Gabriel Riera If in Being and Event the subject is conceived as a finite fragment of a truth-procedure. Badiou’s approach to the four conditions is shaped in terms of Lacan’s distinction between the regime of knowledge and that of truth. instead proposes a different distribution of subject and truth that no longer coincides with a finite/infinite distribution. is immanent. 1) Inesthetics thus responds to a double exigency: on the one hand. 3. subjective capacity is infinite. Insofar as art is one of the four conditions.. Against aesthetic speculation. Art is Idea. In Being and Event. whose system of operations is infinite. Vol. an ‘inesthetics’ describes the strictly intra-philosophical effects produced by the independent existence of some works of art. subjectivization fades away. no. its status remains indeterminate outside the problematic of the event’s name. By taking the work of art as its object it pretends to understand the meaning of the work of art SubStance #120. does not pretend in any manner to make of it an object of philosophy. immanence is possible. Moreover. and what art does with the Idea. if this change is evental (événementiel). Aesthetics seeks to know what art is. a relation of philosophy to art which.. (Handbook of Inesthetics. Logiques des mondes. on the other it must formulate the truths of the works of art into philosophical propositions. 38. which means that once the subject is constituted under the mark of the event. 2009 . it produces truths. 3. a post-evental (post-événementiel) effect. but what are these truths? We know by now that what they have in common with the truths of the other conditions is the void. The logic of consequences replaces the logic of naming. He shows that the subject is identified by a type of marking. by positing that art is in itself producer of truths. The subject is an active and identifiable form of the production of truths.22 By inesthetics Badiou understands . Badiou introduces the fundamental notion of consequence. its essence.
Badiou’s inesthetics posits the existence of truths immanent to the work of art and. as “a critical approach to aesthetics for which art is a question not a given” (Paraesthetics. describes the intra-philosophical effects produced by an autonomous realm. an inesthetic description is doubly restricted: it is concerned only with “intra-philosophical” effects as they apply solely to some works of art. Although Badiou’s approach to art partakes of the generalized consensus that aesthetics cannot be a founding philosophical discipline. it assumes that it knows better than the work itself what the essence of art is. each art form has its own way of bearing witness to the Idea’s passage. These three types of relations. albeit a restrictive and selective one: it can be characterized.25 he insists on the autonomous character of art. Philosophy monitors and rules over art because only the former conceives of itself as the essential education of mankind. classical (Aristotle). partakes of this schema: for the SubStance #120. This is. and who assigns to art the task of educating the citizen. according to Badiou. Contrary to the new relation between philosophy and art that Badiou proposes. inesthetics is not a philosophy of art. of course. in David Carroll’s words. what really matters is speculation. 2009 . it does not share the foundational scope of Heidegger’s ontology of art.23 Badiou’s inesthetics is an anti-aesthetics: the opposite of a speculative aesthetics or a philosophical understanding of art according to which the latter is endowed with the task of furnishing an ontological presentation of a speculative metaphysics. and this because it commits itself to the whole truth. Freudianism (Lacan) and Romantic hermeneutics (Heidegger). no. However the goal and final meaning of this process of education does not belong to art. xiv). Plato and the Marxist conception of art coincide in this desire to master the effects of art. since it does not conceive of the work of art as the ground of truth—that is. Further.Ethical Criticism and Badiou’s Philosopphy 105 beyond the work itself—that is. 3. Although it aims to describe the truths of art. 38. as well as its internal scansions. or Romantic (Hegel). Bertolt Brecht’s theater. in turn. those three articulations do not posit the simultaneously immanent and singular character of the truths proper to the work of art. who sees in the work of art the semblance of a truth. Badiou’s inesthetics is also a para-aesthetics. according to Badiou.24 In this sense. are prevalent in contemporary articulations such as Marxism (Brecht). The positing of a new relation between philosophy and art organizes the Handbook of Inesthetics’ overall architecture. Art’s essence consists in the manifestation of a self-sufficient truth severed from any discourse on art. Badiou wants to delineate a relation between philosophy and art that is no longer didactic (Plato). while art abandons itself to the hypnotic effects of the sensible. Vol. The didactic conception asserts the superiority of philosophy over art: even if art implements effects of truth. Plato’s position.
his inesthetic must presuppose the advent of the Idea as a passage through the sensible (the modern form of Platonism). Although Badiou condemns the Romantic conception of art. but not immanent (Truth is beyond art). no. which consists in the unity of the outer sensible appearance and the inner spirituality—the unity of manifestation and signification.106 Gabriel Riera German writer there is a truth. is not symbolized by the work. Art has the therapeutic function of exhibiting SubStance #120. This is the Romantic position that presupposes that the incarnation of Truth in the sensible world can only enable us to contemplate this Truth in a human form. and a pedagogical means to make of it a triumphant truth: the theater. it presupposes that art bears witness to this passage. at all cost. Hegel. The Absolute truth is the subject. the politics of dialectical materialism. This transference consists in the deposition of passions on the staging of a plausible imaginary that the work of art provides. for this reason. strictly speaking. Badiou aims to preserve. the truths of art are immanent. conceives of art as a speculative project. nor an external goal. But unlike the Romantics. For Hegel it is in art that the Spirit (Geist) abandons the sphere of the finite (embodied in the individual and social life) in order to have access to its final stage: the Absolute. Nomination preserves the very disappearing of the Idea. and above all. For the didactic schema. this passage of the Idea from any sensible identification. the reconciliation between knowledge and reality. are understood as a subjectivity made flesh. since the Idea is pure subtraction. as he preserves the educational value of the Idea. 3. For the Romantics. Truth. to theory. the truth of art is singular (art is the truth as semblant). The artistic work is the incarnation of the Idea in the sensible form and thus the truths of the sensible reality. to produce transference in the subject through identification. much like the Romantics. Further. the classical conception stresses the therapeutic or cathartic function of art. but rather to ethics). Badiou aims to preserve this subtraction as the inscription of a name. it is a pure operation by which the sensible vanishes. The work of art finds its finality in its own being. Nomination is in Badiou the other name of art –which keeps his position closer to Heidegger than Badiou himself would like to acknowledge. Badiou is not far from Plato’s didacticism. but not singular insofar as art is the whole Truth. 2009 . It is pleasure and not truth that is at stake in the work of art (from Aristotle to Lacan the question of art does not belong. Vol. Finally. that is. this time. 38. it becomes flesh in it. The second conception is the exact reversal of the first. Hegel concurs with the Romantics in conceiving art as a figure of knowledge and. therefore. it affirms that only art is capable of truths that. the infinite in the finite. the true work of art is at the service of neither an extrinsic signification. Art is useful because in giving pleasure it has the power to treat the passions of the soul.
3. from which philosophy would seek to distinguish itself insofar as it pretends to pass for the conceptual form of the Idea. for Badiou this conception is unable to show which types of truth art is capable of producing and. functives and concepts. Badiou employs here a Heideggerian schema based on the exhaustion of metaphysical representations in order to declare the end of aesthetics. The didactic schema exhausts itself in the ideological implementation by the state of an art at the service of a “common cause. no. moreover. His description presupposes the fundamental arrangements of his ontology and of the ethics of truth ––multiple. For Badiou the twentieth century was unable to transform these types of relations between philosophy and art and therefore experienced their saturation. Failing to acknowledge that art produces truths by itself and in its works leads the philosopher to keep alive a conception of art as the sensible form of the idea. organized in a certain form. Badiou focuses in detail on the inner logic of the procedure of truth that art is. However.” The Romantic schema saturates itself in the prophetic appeal and its logical correlate. 2009 . waiting. but rather art itself. and percepts. Second. however. For the classical position. It is in the imaginary. For Badiou a work of art is essentially finite. can neither have the upper hand on any of the other truth-procedures. which means first and foremost that it exposes a limited objectivity in space and time. This thought. and philosophy. Vol. un-symbolizable in itself. there is neither immanence nor singularity in the truths of art. Finally. From this position Badiou maintains the ethical orientation. art is simply the imaginary of truth. is precisely what. For Badiou these conceptions should be abandoned and replaced by an inesthetics able to acknowledge that art produces its own truths.Ethical Criticism and Badiou’s Philosopphy 107 that the object of desire.26 and to show how each conception sutures art to different forms of knowledge. the work of art has a principle of limitation and/or ending by SubStance #120. by subtraction. nor hold the key to the compossibility of the four conditions that is philosophy’s proper task. 38. it fails to apprehend philosophy’s true task: to think the compossibility of the four conditions. that the symbolic allows something of the real to appear in its singular configuration. it is important to isolate the specificity of each condition. Badiou argues that this conception is still present in Deleuze’s distinction between art. subject. generic. but the inflection is different since for Badiou only the contemplation of the Idea educates. the classical scheme exhausts itself in the homage it pays to different theories of desire. and truth—because the four conditions allow for a general structure in which they circulate.27 However. The thought of art is not extrinsic to it. draws itself on the background of the affective scintillations. since they circulate differently. to articulate the truths of an epochal situation with the empty and eternal category of truth. science. by definition.
This procedure. The void that is suddenly registered signals the exhaustion of an established form. This can be achieved by giving some type of form to what is seemingly shapeless from the point of view of the established situation. de-structuring and re-structuring capabilities of the void’s “irruption” that are. it is made up by works. Each work of art is an inquiry (enquête) on truth and. etc. Symbolism. instantiated by an event. none of which manifest this generic and infinite truth in themselves. One must endure these innovative. The procedure that brings a truth haphazardly into play originates in an event. Art is affirmative. an artistic event happens only when it is possible to discern in the available artistic matter (with its established canons. SubStance #120. the marks of any event. Vol. The configuration is the composition of a virtually infinite network of works that makes a generic truth of a specific art form. and that inscribes the seal of the void within it. precisely.108 Gabriel Riera which it affirms that it is all the perfection of which it is capable. each inquiry. is a generic and infinite truth. it is the arrival of a suddenly revealed indexation of the void in the indifferent multiplicity of being. a finite fragment of the infinite and unending.). seeing or reading a new procedure that erupts within an already established form. it is always possible that new works of art can inscribe something unheard of within a particular configuration (art historians employ very general terms to refer to this inscription: impressionism. but finitude should be thought within the inner logic of the artistic procedure. its affirmation shows itself by giving a sensible being to the void or to what in-exists within an already exhausted and given configuration.). A work is neither an event. to transform and to leave behind the current active structures. A work of art thus should be conceived in its finitude. tonality. The openness of artistic truth means that although the works of art are the being of this truth. nor to a totalizing process able to be placed under a single predicate. 2009 . nor the truth of this event. This configuration. is the unknown of truth. a proper name (Sophocles. 38. Moreover. etc. therefore. within a given situation. the work of art is forever what it is within the inner circularity of its own end. Newness thus haphazardly deploys truth and the configuration thus put into circulation is inexhaustible: neither reducible to a proper name. but rather the very stuff of the artistic procedure. does not need to be reduced to an objective determination. accepted norms and validating criteria) that an “irruption” of the power of the void has left its trace. however. More specifically. no. It is the void that innovates because it comes to designate that it is possible. Haydn for classical music). for Greek tragedy. And although the event might have a referent. to a period in the history of art (Baroque. 3. and makes its presence felt only in listening. Finally. Each work. it is the fortuitousness of their organization and sequencing that constitutes their generic character.
The Ethics of Reading. 1997. Andrew Gibson Postmodernity. and Ethical Theory.) too. 1996. etc. The configuration can always be actualized anew. Literature and Ethics. 38. 2009 . Politics of Resistance. In. Paris: PUF. University of Illinois. and Infinitely Demanding: Ethics of Commitment. in the words of Samuel Beckett. Oxford: Clarendon Press. and The Character of Criticism. ready made. Evanston. Thomas Docherty.) The Turn to Ethics. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press. West Lafayette. Politics and Subjectivity: Essays on Derrida. that renders visible or audible what was not such up to that point in a given situation (the silences of tonal music acquired a different truth in atonal music).” PMLA. But for Badiou. Shadows of Ethics: Criticism and the Just Society. See also J. Vol. Ethics. 1998. 7-19. 1987. what is essential is to isolate the trajectory of the Idea and to subtract it from the sensible. Ethical Criticism: Reading After Levinas. London: Phronesis. That at a given moment the configuration might appear as something obsolete does not necessarily mean that it is finished once and for all. Chicago 1. London: Routledge. Art is a truth that gives form to what is shapeless. Eluard. 1999 and Marjorie Garber. Ill. Mathématique. Aragon. Literature. Geoffrey Galt Harpham. Descartes et Freud. Ethics and the Novel. 3. 1999. 1999. The most complete survey of ethical literary criticism is by Lawrence Buell. object trouvé. Theory. psychanalyse. 2006. Derrida. Edinburgh: Edinburgh UP. as with the ready made throughout the second half of the twentieth century. 2007. The verbal invention of a name without precedent is experienced by the established and dominant languages of a situation as ill-said or missaid. Evidence et étrangeté. The Ethics of Deconstruction: Levinas. no. Notes SubStance #120. 2000. Beckett and Stephan Mallarmé function as two constant points of reference and of inexhaustible insights for Badiou. rearticulated in a new configuration. For an interesting take on the matheme. London: Routledge. and philosophy aims to formalize its passage. Hillis Miller. For a more encompassing argument see also Simon Critchley.Ethical Criticism and Badiou’s Philosopphy 109 Beyond some proper names (Breton. London: Verso. vol. Getting it Right: Language. Alterities: Criticism.: Northwestern UP. 2000. and Representation. 1999. Ernst) and the historical sequence (Surrealism). Robert Eaglestone. Mention should be made also of Gerald L. Beckett’s work is an especially privileged instance of an art conceived as a labor of subtraction. Bruns. Tragic Thoughts at the End of Philosophy: Language. (Ed. Duchamp. 1999. 3. Durham: Duke UP. London: Routledge. The truth of art consists precisely in this trajectory.: Purdue UP. New York: Columbia UP. there exists a large number of minor or ignored inquiries that are an integral part of this configuration (automatic writing. 2. 114: 1. “In Pursuit of Ethics. and Reading Narrative. Finally. Levinas and Contemporary French Thought. see René Guitart. Chicago: Chicago UP. Art distinguishes itself from the other three truth-procedures in that it has the sensible as such as its element. Special Topic: Ethics and Literary Study (January 1999). 1992. any work of art is an inventive inquiry instantiated by an event that engages a beyond-a-previous-given situation by the void that opens within the canonical structures and that belongs to an infinite configuration.
(Ed. Editions de Minuit 2002. See Kouvelakis. 2002. I am thinking of Martha Nussbaum and Richard Rorty. 13. and the principle of becoming of this entity. I have dealt with this issue in “Living with an Idea”: Ethics and Politics in Badiou’s Logiques des mondes. Badiou’s Platonism. 78-83.” in Charles Ramond. “La structure. ou les paradoxes d’ Alain Badiou. the pure groundless multiplicity is. Paris: Seuil. Penser le multiple. 28 (2000). In his reading of Plato’s dialogue in Being and Event Badiou dislodges the dialectic of unity and multiplicity. “La méthode de dramatization. In Intrigues: From Being to the Other New York: Fordham University Press. Badiou’s philosophical decision concerning the ontological rehabilitation of the multiple unfolds by way of a critique of the homologation of being and with an elucidation of the non-being of the one. Vol. My goal in this paper is to reframe those sections dealing with Badiou’s conceptions of the event and the subject in terms of the major changes that his system undergoes with the publication of Logiques de mondes. whose works represent a revival of a moral. since for Badiou manifestation or appearing has a univocal and permanent character. Insofar as Beckett’s late work is a rigorous exploration of the possibilities of the event.” Pli: The Warwick Journal of Philosophy. 132. NY: SUNY Press. Paris: Seuil. 8. entails a reversal of Platonism. 1992. Albany: SUNY Press. SubStance #120. 38. 5. 2009 . I have dealt with the interplay between an ethical writing and the ethics of writing in Levinas and Blanchot. 9. Paris: L’ Harmattan. Badiou’s Platonism posits a division in the transcendental plane of being (pure multiple) and the immanent plane of phenomena (the appearing of phenomena counted-as-one). This section reconsiders and expands various parts of the “Introduction” to Gabriel Riera (ed). (2005). “La politique dans ses limites. 9 (2000). should be read as a patient. and a phenomenology founded upon the possibility of recognizing the one as the appearing of the multiple in the individuality of things. see Derrida.” Alain Badiou. since for him being is a multiplicity that is “en elle-même système de rapports différentiels. 12. 1967. Finally. This ontological rehabilitation of the multiple is grounded in Plato’s Parmenides. For the concept of play. On the one hand. trans.” See Gilles Deleuze. Special issue on Alain Badiou.” Actuel Marx.110 Gabriel Riera His work. 7. 3. A Short Treaty on Transitory Ontology. Badiou’s “return to Plato” is an overdetermined gesture. Paris: Seuil. “La vérité. as processed through Cantor and his legacy. 13: 1 (Spring/Printemps 2009). it also exposes an ethics of naming: the ill-said that testifies a fidelity to the event. Being. 10. Deleuze can also be included here.” in L’île déserte et autres textes. at the same time. disciplined and vigilant evacuation of doxa. See Alain Badiou. See Pierre Verstraeten. 4. Symposium: The Canadian Journal for Continental Philosophy. appearing imposes the notion of a singular logic. as well as the dialectic of identity and alterity. Tome 2 de L’Être et l’événement. the principle of identity of what appears. “To Have Done with the End of Philosophy. “The question from which I began speculating can now be formulated as follows: can the One be unsealed from Being? Can the metaphysical enframing of Being by the One be severed?. 6. 2006. value-oriented approach to literature alien to the presuppositions of the ethical turn in literary studies. 1-20. no. 39-54.) Alain Badiou. forçage et innomable. 154. Albany.” Badiou is also able to resurrect the conceptual figures of the Philosopher and the Sophist and to wage war against forms of thinking that relinquish the possibility of any real change. 2007. 14.” Conditions. While Being as such is inconsistent. Alain Badiou: Philosophy and Its Conditions.” L’écriture et la difference. 11. “L’apport the Badiou à la 8eme hypothèse du Parménide. 34. In Plato Badiou sees both an ontology of the pure multiple. 220-38. consequently. 2006. Briefings on Existence. le signe et le jeu dans le discours des sciences humaines. it aims to de-suture philosophy from the fascination of the poem and thus allows him to declare a recommencement of philosophy beyond Heidegger’s declaration of the “end of metaphysics. Norman Madarasz. See Toscano.
In Logiques des Mondes. ed. “L’âge des poètes. event. In Badiou. This is the case in both the “On Subtraction.1994. witness what Badiou says about Severo Sarduy. London: Routledge.).” See Alain Badiou. Pessoa. What is Philosophy?. Adieu à l’ésthetique. Paris: PUF. (2005). and insofar as the poem is the dominant paradigm. specifically in Badiou’s determination of the poetic subjectivity of the century as that of the getteur. no. Pourquoi des poètes en temps de détresse. also provides a typology of change that enables him to distinguish between modification. An Essay on the Understanding of Evil. the appearing of multiplicities in a world. Vol. 18. Alain Badiou: Philosophy and Its Conditions. Further references to Logiques du monde will be cited as LM. This real change. trans. Celan. 23. 2006. In Logiques des mondes Badiou develops an objective phenomenology of appearing in view of specifying the logical character of real change as it takes place in a real given world. NY: SUNY Press.” in Jacques Rancière. Paris: Seuil. 20. real change imposes an effective discontinuity upon the world it comes to affect. Badiou. Moore.” in Theoretical Writings. In “For an Ethics of Mystery. When Badiou confronts writers whose poetics tend to transgress the boundaries of well-established art forms. 1-20. La Politique des poètes. 27. 61-86. Ray Brassier and Alberto Toscano. However. 2007. Paris: Seuil. In fact. W. 1998.Ethical Criticism and Badiou’s Philosopphy 111 15. L’être et l’événement. ——-. and trans. 1992. London: Continuum Books. 1992. L’événement et le temps. see A. Paris: Bibliothèque du Collège International de Philosophie. See Jean-Marie Schaeffer. 1999 and “L’âge des poètes. Beckett. 2009 . trans. London: Verso. fact and strong singularity (event). Alberto Toscano and Nina Power.” I dealt with the tension that the double demand of belonging and inclusion posits in Badiou’s inesthetics. Works Cited SubStance #120. 58. beyond a confined set of very abstract poets and writers. Albany: SUNY Press. When it happens. Pourquoi des poètes en temps de détresse.Court traité d’ontologie transitoire. in The Century. trans. See Gilles Deleuze. Further references to L’être et l’événement will be cited as EE. Alain. Ethics. 25. the end of aesthetics is called “the end of the age of poets. 22. 2004. This formulation appears in Alain Badiou’s Briefings on Existence. Alain Badiou: Philosophy and Its Conditions. 26. Albany: SUNY Press. ed. See Gabriel Riera (Ed. Badiou. 3. it is possible to see the logic of consequences at work. 2001. ed. 1998. Alberto Toscano. New York: Columbia University Press. originally published as Court traité d’ontologie transitoire. or strong singularity results from a truth process that modifies both by its own power. Manchester: Clinamen. The Infinite. “L’Irreductible. For the question of the infinite in the philosophy of mathematics. Norman Madarasz. not unlike more phenomenological approaches to the event. London: Politi. ——-. 21. Livre 5. Handbook of Inesthetics.” Epokhè 3 (1993): 11–49. Manifesto for Philosophy. ——-. Paris: Bibliothèque du Collège International de Philosophie (Rue Descartes). Albany. 19. and trans. Stanford: Stanford University Press. 2004 and in On Beckett. 16. 24. 2003. and Claude Romano. La Politique des poètes. Paris: PUF. 1988. For more phenomenological approaches to the event see. things do not unfold as neatly. 23. 2001. one wonders if it is possible to deploy Badiou’s approach to art in general. 2000. such as Mallarmé. This text predates the formulation of Logiques des mondes. Up to this point I have dealt with the basic tenets of Badiou’s ontology as presented in my “Introduction” to Gabriel Riera (ed). Paris: Seuil. ——-. and the poem in particular.” in Jacques Rancière. A close comparison between Badiou’s ontology and his logic follows from this point on. ed. and by the disconcerting force of its consequences. 1999. Henry Maldiney. 38. 17. Alberto Toscano. Rue Descartes.
” Conditions. Derrida. 2001. Lyotard. 2006. Paris: Seuil. NY: SUNY Press. “Introduction. 1-20. Paris: Editions de Minuit. Alphonso Lingis. Albany. “La vérité. no. trans. Jacques. Trans. 1982. Carroll. New York: Methuen.) Alain Badiou. ——-. 3. Penser le multiple. Deleuze. An Essay on Exteriority. Manifesto for Philosophy. Paris: L’ Harmattan. SubStance #120. Pittsburgh: Duquesne University Press. 1969. Gabriel (Ed). 1987. Gilles. Paris: Seuil. trans. 2002. 38. Derrida. 1999. Carroll. 1994. Paris: Seuil. Théorie du sujet. ——-. ——-. Charles (Ed. 1992. Totality and Infinity.” Alain Badiou: Philosophy and Its Conditions. Levinas. New York: Columbia University Press. Paul Patton. Emmanuel. forçage et innomable. Riera. Paraesthetics: Foucault. Logiques du monde. Ramond. 2009 . Norman Madarasz. Vol.112 Gabriel Riera ——-. Difference and Repetition. (2005). Albany: SUNY Press. De la grammatologie.
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