The Event of Language as Force of Life: agamben's linguistic vitalism

Lorenzo Chiesa (Lead / Corresponding author), Frank Ruda (Lead / Corresponding author)

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    18 Citations (Scopus)


    The aim of this paper is threefold. Firstly, we intend to emphasise the systematic nature of Agamben’s project and its insistence on the creation of a supposedly new definition of philosophy as such. Secondly, we mean to show how such an endeavour is first and foremost ontological, not political, and explicitly inscribes itself within the legacy of twentieth-century philosophy’s (especially Heidegger’s) attempt to overcome metaphysics. Thirdly, we seek to problematise the all too often taken-for-granted proximity between Agamben’s ontological politicisation of philosophy and Badiou’s and Žižek’s re-launching of a “communist hypothesis” that is inextricable from a positive re-evaluation of materialism and dialectics. Our central claim is that Agamben’s thought relies on a vitalist ontology that thinks the event of language as the force of life and, consequently, that his – ultimately theological – recuperation and critique of dialectics can only be understood in this framework, that is, outside, if not against, any return to Marx.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)163-180
    Number of pages18
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 22 Nov 2011


    Dive into the research topics of 'The Event of Language as Force of Life: agamben's linguistic vitalism'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this