Althusser and His Contemporaries: Philosophy’s Perpetual War by Warren Montag

By Warren Montag

Althusser and His Contemporaries alters and expands realizing of Louis Althusser and French philosophy of the Nineteen Sixties and Seventies. hundreds of thousands of pages of formerly unpublished paintings from diversified sessions of Althusser's occupation were made on hand in French due to the fact his loss of life in 1990. in accordance with meticulous learn of the philosopher's posthumous courses, in addition to his unpublished manuscripts, lecture notes, letters, and marginalia, Warren Montag offers a thoroughgoing reevaluation of Althusser's philosophical venture.

Montag exhibits that the theorist was once intensely engaged with the paintings of his contemporaries, rather Foucault, Derrida, Deleuze, and Lacan. studying Althusser's philosophy as a chain of encounters together with his peers' concept, Montag contends that Althusser's significant philosophical confrontations revolved round 3 issues: constitution, topic, and beginnings and endings. interpreting Althusser interpreting his contemporaries, Montag sheds new gentle on structuralism, poststructuralism, and the extreme second of French notion within the Sixties and Seventies.

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Additional info for Althusser and His Contemporaries: Philosophy’s Perpetual War

Example text

As a measure of that distance that it is possible and even necessary to take from our previous understanding of structuralism, we might well take advantage of some materials that the passage of time has made available to us. Althusser’s correspondence (part of which has been published), unpublished texts, lecture notes, and so on from the period 1961–68 show Althusser’s vivid interest in the emergent movement of structuralism. These materials also show an unmistakable shift in attitude between 1962 and 1966.

However, is there not still a prior level, the level from which it is possible to ask what is structure in general, the structure of which both the transcendental and empirical structures would be examples (and here Derrida argues that the same reduction can and must be carried out in relation to genesis, which must possess a general form for the distinction between transcendental and empirical genesis to be meaningful)? But on the basis of what or from where can this question be asked: Is there a transcendental 34 Chapter Two of the transcendental?

It is possible to respond that these authors (whose contemporary partisans fiercely resist their definition as structuralists) at most had a structuralist period: it would be hard to deny that Barthes’s Fashion System, published in 1967, is a textbook application of the linguistic model to fashion, while The Pleasure of the Text written a few years later abandons this model almost entirely. The case of Foucault is even more complicated: he himself repeatedly labeled his The Birth of the Clinic, published in 1963, as “a structural study” 20 Chapter One (“une étude structurale”) (although the phrase disappears from the edition of 1972, the edition on which the English translation is based) whose aim was to “treat semantic elements .

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