Metaphysics

Badiou's 'Being and Event': A Reader's Guide by Christopher Norris

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 largely thought of to have re-shaped the nature and set new phrases for the longer term improvement of philosophy in France and in different places. This ebook has been written a great deal so that it will clarifying Badiou's advanced and critical paintings for non-specialist readers. It bargains assistance on philosophical and highbrow context, key subject matters, examining the textual content, reception and impact; and extra interpreting.

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Extra resources for Badiou's 'Being and Event': A Reader's Guide

Example text

Such enquiry will take as its object�domain the most advanced researches of 'working mathematicians', that is, their most powerful and far� reaching discoveries with respect to the various orders of inclu­ sion, exclusion, belonging, membership, excess, 'inconsistent' versus 'consistent' multiplicity and so forth. Thus, if philosophers wish to contribute usefully to this enterprise, then - as Plato required of all students signing up for his Academy - they will need to go to school with the mathematicians and not suppose (as philosophers have all too often been prone to do) that they are capable of excogitating such truths through some purely a priori process of thought.

Ity of thinking beyond the limits of whatever is pre­ sented as the limiting condition of thought in some given disci­ plinary domain. >ment of set-theoretical enquiry from Frege and Cantor to Co· len), and thence to a renovated concept of truth that would also and inseparably carry along with it a renovated concept of the subject. It is here that Badiou flrst introduces another of Cohen's set-theoretical concepts, namely that of 'forcing', or the process whereby certain paradoxes, contradictions, aporias or inconsis­ tencies within some existing state of knowledge can later from a more advanced stage of understanding - be seen to have marked precisely those symptomatic stress-points where know­ ledge fell short of a truth beyond its best powers of discernment or conceptual grasp.

However, it is one that has given rise to a great many problems with regard to epistemology and philos o­ phy of science, as shown by the interminable disputes between rationalists and empiricists, realists and anti-realists or objectiv­ ists and constructivists. At any rate there is prima facie much to be said for an approach, like Badiou's, that aims to cut through this proliferating thicket of debates by grounding its case in ontology, rather than epistemology, and by grounding its ontol­ ogy not (as with Heidegger) in language, her meneutics or inter­ pretation-theory but rather in mathematics, logic and the formal sciences.

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