Cosmos and History: The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy, Vol 2, No 1-2 (2006)

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Alain Badiou's Being and Event

Jon Roffe


Much like the parade of claimants for the hand of Penelope in Homerrsquo;s Odyssey, the theoretical humanities have been presented with a string of would-be maicirc;tres agrave; pensers, each bringing with them claims of radical originality, and the promise of hope for the disciplines in question. Not only is the philosophy of Alain Badiou among the very few who have serious justifications to the claim of originality, the rigour, scope and goals of his philosophy reveal him as the first thinker in a long time to have thenbsp; resources necessary to engage with the ailments of theoretical discourse in the contemporary environment of global capitalism, and the steady dismantling of the traditional infrastructure of the human sciences and philosophy. This article provides an outline of the key positions espoused in Badiou#39;s key work Being and Event, and an assessment of its contemporary import.

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