Cover

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Half Title, Series Editors, Title Page, Copyright, Quotation

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Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Preface: The Book We Are All Waiting For

Slavoj Žižek,

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pp. ix-xviii

With regard to materialism, we are today witnessing a paradoxical reversal. In the standard pre-critical metaphysics, “finitude” was associated with materialist empiricism (“only material finite objects really exist”), while “infinity” was the domain of idealist spiritualism. ...

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xix-xx

Samuel Beckett once spoke of “the time taken to be proved true.” My sincere hope is that the time this book took to materialize will have been a time taken to be proved solid, rigid, and consistent. ...

List of Abbreviations

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pp. xxi-xxiv

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Introduction: I, Philosophy, Speak

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pp. 3-10

In 1914 Sigmund Freud published a remarkable text. In it he for the first time introduced the concept of the compulsion to repeat, of the transference neurosis, and of working through.1 Freud begins it by periodizing (and analyzing) the history of psychoanalytic technique. ...

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1. Remember: Idealism without Idealism

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pp. 11-31

God is dead and idealism died on the very same day.1 Our time is one which can therefore be designated as coming “after the death of idealism.” Today, these not only seem to be quite self-evident statements, they also derive their evidence, following Badiou, in a large part from the fact that they have historically been proven by Georg Cantor2 among others. ...

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2. Remember to Remember: Materialism of the Idea

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pp. 32-47

Philosophy makes things endlessly more difficult. One reason for this is that philosophy in its very practice opposes forms of oblivion that make certain ways of life possible to begin with. It might be argued that one of the last thinkers to make this the center and kernel of his overall philosophical writings has been Martin Heidegger. ...

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3. Repeat: Remembering, Repeating, Working through Materialism

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pp. 48-82

Without knowledge of the situation any action is difficult, true action even seems to be impossible. But to render this in more precise terms: real action only becomes possible when pseudo-actions (actions that only reproduce the given situation and its vectors) and true actions (actions that have an influence on and hence transform the fundamental coordinates of the situation) become distinguishable. ...

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4. Repeat Again: Exiting the Woods of Materialism

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pp. 83-116

Briefly before the calendric beginning of the new century, in 1999, Slavoj Žižek diagnosed that “a specter is haunting western academia . . . the specter of the Cartesian subject. All academic powers have entered into a holy alliance to exorcize this specter.”1 He claimed that it was high time for all Cartesians to “meet the nursery tale of the Specter of Cartesian subjectivity with the philosophical manifesto of Cartesian subjectivity itself.”2 ...

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5. Working Through: What Is to Be Done with Philosophy?

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pp. 117-132

One thing seems to be evident within the oeuvre of Alain Badiou: there are no philosophical subjects. There does not seem to be any question about this. Philosophy does not include any effective subject position; no subject is in itself, an sich, philosophical. And it also seems to be quite evident why that is. ...

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6. Working Through Working Through: The Immanence of Thought, or Returning to Hegel?

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pp. 133-152

Alain Badiou is well known for being a fierce critique of Hegel. And in the previous chapters I indicated many possible options of why this is. Badiou once stated with regard to his political position: “there are two ways of rescuing the idea of communism in philosophy today; either by abandoning Hegel, not without regret, ...

Notes

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pp. 153-188

Bibliography

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pp. 189-198

Index

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pp. 199-200