Deleuze: The Clamor of Being
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The works of Gilles Deleuze -- on cinema, literature, painting, and philosophy -- have made him one of the most widely read thinkers of his generation. This compact critical volume is not only a powerful reappraisal of Deleuze's thought, but also the first major work by Alain Badiou available in English. Badiou compellingly redefines "Deleuzian, " throwing down the gauntlet in the battle over the very meaning of Deleuze's legacy.
For those who view Deleuze as the apostle of desire, flu, and multiplicity, Badiou's book is a deliberate provocation. Through a deep philosophical engagement with his writings, Badiou contends that Deleuze is not the Dionysian thinker of becoming he took himself to be; on the contrary, he is an ascetic philosopher of Being and Oneness. Deleuze's self-declared anti-Platonism fails -- and that, in Badiou's view, may ultimately be to his credit. "Perhaps it is not Platonism that has to be overturned, " Badiou writes, "but the anti-Platonism taken as evident throughout this entire century."
This volume draws on a five-year correspondence undertaken by Badiou and Deleuze near the end of Deleuze's life, when the two put aside long-standing political and philosophical differences to exchange ideas about similar problems in their work. Badiou's incomparably attentive readings of key Deleuzian concepts radically revise reigning interpretations, offering new insights to even the veteran Deleuze reader and serving as an entree to the controversial notion of a "restoration" of Plato advocated by Badiou -- in his own right one of the most original figures in postwar French philosophy.
The result is a critical tour de force that repositions Deleuze, one of the mostimportant thinkers of our time, and introduces Badiou to English-speaking readers.
a common image of thought or, in the terms of What Is Philosophy?,3 to an isomorphism of the "plane of immanence" upon which these concepts are deployed. Accordingly, Deleuze emphasized his Foucault as stemming from the necessity "to discern the logic of Foucault's thought as a whole" and to delineate thereby a "por trait of Foucault's philosophy" capable of capturing that which, "like a wind that pushes you from behind, in a series of gusts and jolts," would have forced Foucault to pass
inspiration above all from Nietzsche (although there is in Nietzsche himself a profound saintliness), it is necessary to uphold that the condition of thought, for Deleuze, is ascetic. This is what radically explains the kinship of Deleuze and the Stoics, other than the fact that they also thought of Being directly as totality. One should not be misled by the use of the word "anarchy" to designate the nomadism of singularities, for Deleuze specifies "crowned anarchy," and it is crucial to think
Sacher-Masoch -consists in trying out a name of Being and in constructing a pro tocol of thought (that is to be as automatic as possible) by which the pertinence of this name can be evaluated with respect to the essential property that one expects it to preserve (or even to reinforce within thought): namely, univocity. What emerges over the course of these experiments is that a single name is never sufficient, but that two are required. Why? The reason is that Being needs to be said in a single
copy of an eternal model. But if the image is referred, as it should be, to its specific being as simulacrum (and not to mimesis), and eternity to the One qua integral virtual, we can understand that, for Deleuze as well, for Deleuze above all, the essence of time consists in expressing the eternal. As Deleuze forcefully puts it, the time-images, which can be situated in the creative power of the All, are "volume-images which are beyond movement itself" (Cinema 1, p. 1 1). This clearly underlines
anarcho-desiring Deleuzianism," making of Deleuze the champion of desire, free flux, and anarchic experimentation, is the first of the false images he sets out to shatter. And here, En glish-language readers, whose reception of Deleuze has been filtered through the a chronology of translations and the emphasis of commentators on the playful and extravagant aspects of Deleuze's collaboration with Felix Guattari, most notably in Anti-Oedipus, will bear the full brunt of Badiou's scathing