Anti-Badiou: The Introduction of Maoism into Philosophy
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This compelling and highly original book represents a confrontation between two of the most radical thinkers at work in France today: Alain Badiou and the author, François Laruelle.
At face value, the two have much in common: both espouse a position of absolute immanence; both argue that philosophy is conditioned by science; and both command a pluralism of thought. Anti-Badiou relates the parallel stories of Badiou's Maoist 'ontology of the void' and Laruelle's own performative practice of 'non-philosophy' and explains why the two are in fact radically different. Badiou's entire project aims to re-educate philosophy through one science: mathematics. Laruelle carefully examines Badiou's Being and Event and shows how Badiou has created a new aristocracy that crowns his own philosophy as the master of an entire theoretical universe. In turn, Laruelle explains the contrast with his own non-philosophy as a true democracy of thought that breaks philosophy's continual enthrall with mathematics and instead opens up a myriad of 'non-standard' places where thinking can be found and practised.
plans so as to save, conserve, or raise up the past. Which is only one more finality and the vehicle of all finalities, rather than something that could draw out new inventions from them. If philosophy as double transcendence is imaginary in the specular sense, then non-philosophy opposes to it the algebraic imaginary and its quantum superposition. This is what the vision-in-One would say, and has always sought to say; vision-in-One as a method that struggles systematically against doublets, that
course, throughout, at every level (lower, middling, higher) there are exceptions, the elect of the Idea. A rarefied atmosphere, the atmosphere of the ascetic void. Even revolutionary history is rare; only the blissful multiple is inconsistent and cannot be enumerated. We find ourselves in a desert that we tramp through without surveying it, without flowing over it like Deleuze’s desire; an arid country where it is difficult to breathe. Just as aristocratic communism declares itself against
ourselves to be subjectivated by science. Certainly, it is miraculous, like the discovery of a new principle, but this permits us to free ourselves from a certain philosophical yoke. There are two types of human or two human “becomings”: those that identify themselves with the All under various imaginary forms, and those that identify themselves with a scientific procedure and think according to it. Thus, there are two subjects, the All-subject or the philosopher-religious type, and the
as meta-ontology or meta-materialism. Unilaterality is simple and goes from one term to the other: it passes between two terms. Badiou is unilaterally and mechanically a set-theorist in ontology: he does not return immediately from the latter to the former, but keeps meta-ontology in reserve and represses it until the last possible moment. Abstract mechanical unilaterality and meta-ontology go hand-in-hand. In NP and its generic matrix, there is an inversion of the products of variables, but
the philosophical and the ideal decision of mathematics: their intersection produces the objective appearance of a really absolute (that is to say, real or ontological) decision; but as if it were purely ontological and entirely disburdened of the finitude of philosophical decision. The equation mathematics = ontology is thus nothing but an auto-negation of decision. Whence also the general style of the miracle, of the conjuncture achieved without any real work, that belongs to this contemplative