Remembering, repeating, working through Marx: Badiou, Žižek and the Actualizations of Marxism

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Abstract

The article starts from delineating the precise coordinates of the concept of action as it can be found in the work of Slavoj Žižek and Alain Badiou. It argues in detail why to properly grasp its reach and with it what is at stake in the two philosophical enterprises can best be comprehended when it is read as an attempt of re-actualizing Marx. But, as the article demonstrates, actualization does not come down to being a mere gesture of repetition. It rather involves a complex linkage of different elements that can be best captured by the psychoanalytic slogan of remembering, repeating and working through. It implies remembering Marx gesture, repeating his involvement with Hegel and a working through of the concept of negation. All this gives rise to a new form of ideology critique and a new form of materialist dialectics. The article systematically reconstructs the different articulations which the actualization of Marx finds in Žižek and Badiou and ends by marking a crucial difference with regard to their renewed dialectics.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)293-319
Number of pages27
JournalRevue Internationale de Philosophie
Volume261
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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