By Christopher Norris
Alain Badiou's Being and Event is the main unique and important paintings of French philosophy to have seemed in fresh many years. it's the magnum opus of a philosopher who's commonly thought of to have re-shaped the nature and set new phrases for the longer term improvement of philosophy in France and in other places. This e-book has been written greatly which will clarifying Badiou's advanced and critical paintings for non-specialist readers. It deals counsel on philosophical and highbrow context, key subject matters, examining the textual content, reception and impact; and additional examining.
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Additional info for Badiou's 'Being and Event': A Reader's Guide (Continuum Reader's Guides)
BEING: MULTIPLE AND VOID. PLATO/CANTOR 1. 1 For Badiou, conversely, this is a work whose ‘revolving doors . . introduce us to the singular joy of never seeing the moment of conclusion arrive’ (p. 23). That is to say, this is a thoroughly aporetic dialogue, one that fails to reach any decisive or definitive conclusion not through some weakness, dialectical wrong turn or argumentative path not taken but rather through inherent complications in its subjectmatter that would have to wait more than two millennia before mathematicians and logicians came up with the conceptual means to handle them.
So it is – through this constantly evolving dialectic of containment and uncontainable excess – that thought is empowered to transgress and surpass the limits laid down by any regnant paradigm or merely de facto consensus of belief. In its absence, thought will most likely yield to one or other of the two great opposing temptations that Badiou finds endemic across a whole range of present-day disciplines. On the one hand is the lure of that sophistical approach (post-structuralist, postmodernist, Wittgensteinian, hermeneutic, constructivist or neopragmatist) according to which it makes no sense to suppose the existence of truths beyond those that fall within range of our present epistemic, cognitive, conceptual or – what this is usually taken to entail – linguistic-expressive capacity.
It is a safe bet that this latter set of claims would be received by most analytic philosophers with responses ranging from wry disdain to bewilderment or sheer incredulity. That is, they would most likely find something absurd in the very idea that a single project of thought – even (or especially) one grounded in a settheoretically derived formal ontology – might have something significant to say about topics so diverse or downright ill-assorted as politics, science, art and love. However, that is precisely what this Preface sets out in summary style and what the book then proceeds to demonstrate by way of a highly structured, tightly reasoned and intricately cross-referenced process of argument sometimes reminiscent of the manner of reasoning more geometrico – ‘in the geometrical manner’ – that so appealed to rationalist philosophers of the seventeenth century.