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The Transcendental and Inexistence in Alain Badiou’s Philosophy: A Derridean Similarity?
Philosophy Today (2015)
  • Antonio Calcagno
In Logics of Worlds, Badiou claims that his concept of inexistence is similar to Derrida’s différance. This paper argues that Derrida’s double bind of possibility and impossibility, which co-constitutes and flows from the spatio-temporising that is différance, is less binary in its logic than Badiou’s notion of inexistence allows. For Badiou, time and the subject are constituted by the event, by a decision and the fidelity to a decision. He has no real sense of Derridean space: Badiou discusses space as localisation, atoms, situations or the containment that is proper to any set. Derridean spatialsing stems from de Saussure and his view of the differentiation between signs and words and phrases that produces meaning. I maintain that though there may be a resemblance between the two philosophers qua what they see is unaccountable or lies closed or hidden yet conditions any given “system” or “meaning-structure,” the way they justify such accounts would suggest a greater gap than what Badiou may be prepared to concede.
  • Badiou,
  • Derrida,
  • Transcendental,
  • Inexistence
Publication Date
Spring 2015
Citation Information
Antonio Calcagno. "The Transcendental and Inexistence in Alain Badiou’s Philosophy: A Derridean Similarity?" Philosophy Today Vol. 59 Iss. 2 (2015)
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