The Event in Deleuze: Alain Badiou

Just circulating on the email lists is notification of the new issue of the journal Parrhesia. In it is contained the essay:

The Event in Deleuze, by Alain Badiou

EDIT: I’ve just read it. Can someone, perhaps a Deleuzian prof. with more dosh than I, send Badiou a copy of Le Pli (The Fold), please?

The Logic of Sense only discusses one half of the event: That is, to use Whiteheadian terminology, the singularities pertaining to the vectors of conceptual prehension [what Badiou calls ‘thought’ in the article] concrescent as the actual occassion of ‘eternal objects’ [or what Deleuze calls a ‘pure event’] captured within the percipience of the society [or the symbolic structurations] of language. Badiou rightly dismisses calling ‘pure events’ by their Whiteheadian name ‘eternal objects’ because Deleuze was a realist, so why the bloody hell doesn’t Badiou discuss the other half of the event?

Because Badiou wants the event to be about the logic of novelty that evades the symbolic structurations and forces these social mechanisms to account for the novelty through special subjects who decide a fidelity to the evacuated void produced in the wake of the novelty.

The incorporeal wave of Deleuze’s (and Whitehead’s) concrescence versus the fatigued novelty of Badiou’s void.

Via Heidegger and Whitehead, “the jug,” I believe, could serve as a useful hinge between Badiou and Deleuze respectively. That is, at least to overcome the differend, as Badiou notes. More on this at some other date.

6 replies on “The Event in Deleuze: Alain Badiou”

  1. I haven’t read this Badiou essay as yet, but these comments of yours would (not so coincidentally) apply to some extent to Hallward’s Deleuze book, I think. Thanks. So, not going to S Carolina are you?

  2. hi greg,

    it is astonishing that Badiou does not reference le pli in the essay at all (which is actually an extract from a book, so maybe he does somewhere else?). i know i am only a peanut phd student but surely le pli is essential for getting a thorough understanding of Deleuze’s conception of the event? or perhaps more importantly for Badiou, demonstrating that you have a thorough understanding. but Badiou must have read le pli, and the mention of ‘eternal objects’ leads me to believe that Badiou has read some whitehead, so I don’t know what he is trying to get at with this jiggery-pokery. does Hallward engage with deleuze’s conception of the event beyond Logic of Sense?

    to the ‘text and images’ conference, in south carolina? i would have loved to, but I am in institutional limbo until I finish the phd, which should be shortly. Speaking of which the course you are running on ‘Ethnography and Technology’ the following month after the carolina conf looks pretty awesome! Is there any chance you can post some of the course notes or readings or something perhaps after the event for those unable to attend?

    Hopefully I should have finished the diss by mid-year at the latest, so if i can afford it backpacker styles I certainly want to go to the media events conference in Bremen (and cause some trouble with the neo-durkheimians, lol).

  3. Hi Glen,

    Still haven’t read the Badiou essay, (above) but, yes, Hallward on Deleuze’s event is largely via Logic of Sense. But it is all rather complicated, implicated, perplicated, etc — and I am working my way through these combative architectures and atmospheres … not today or tomorrow, maybe in a month when I am working on my S Carolina talk (on Hallward’s Deleuze). I will run it past you maybe when time is closer. And I am afraid that you have confused me with my old pal Greg Wise (old?); we are frequent conference roommates, and collaborators, and in the dark we cannot even quite tell each other apart but … I am the Greg just back from ‘Theorizing Affect’ in Durham England (oh, and I promised Mel Gregg a conference report) and having spent some days there chatting with someone who is now among my favorite-people-on-the-planet, Anna Gibbs and the equally wonderful Megan Watkins, and your name came up (there was a paper on cars and affect) … in case, your ears were ringing … and Badiou does of course cite Le Pli in his Clamor of Being, but his Leibniz is not Deleuze’s to say the least

  4. ouch, sorry greg. i don’t like it when people decide they know how to spell my name (with two n’s) better than I do (with one n) let alone get me mixed up with another person entirely. damn, i should pay more attention to the provided email.

    i can’t find anything online about the theorizing affect conference!?!? oh, you american, spelling it with a ‘z’! is the car affect paper by Dan Swanton? That does look interesting, especially his use of the phrase ‘pimped rides’ because I did an interview with the executive producer of the US Pimp My Ride.

  5. Thanks for sending me this, actually I have this terrible desire to hear precisely what you think of Being and Event, rather than these snippets of rejection of Badiou’s work, which is after all a very different ontological project than Deleuze’s own and can’t be considered in the same way as the work called Deleuze. I tend to think reading this text that we should cease the endless game of comparing the two philosophers and rather treat them both as useful toolboxes.

    But then I do feel more sympathetic to Badiou then fellow travellers like Hallward… I’ll email you seperately when I’ve thought about the Badiou text some more…

    white on black text…. very retrograde, even reactionary as it breaks the laws of typology !!!!

  6. only menus should be easy to read 😉

    no, you are right I should properly engage with _B&E_, but I am full throttle at the moment trying to get a first draft of the diss done before I have to start working again soall I can do is offer these tiny immediate reactionary readings, or summaries of my thinking from elsewhere.

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