Alain Badiou
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Ed's Favorite Quotations. Emphasis added. References below.


Being and Event.

"All thought supposes a situation of the thinkable, which is to say a structure, a count-as-one, in which the presented multiple is consistent and numerable."1a BRENTANO

" . . . [T]here is a being of nothing, as form of the unpresentable."1b

" . . . [T]he unpresentable is presented, as a substractive term of the presentation of presentation."1c

" . . . [E]very structured presentation supposes a metastructure, termed the state of the situation."1d

"Ethics . . . comes down to the following imperative: 'Decide from the standpoint of the undecidable.'"1e

"Being does not commence."1f

" . . . [T]he 'object' of mathematics is being-qua-being . . ."1g

"Reasoning via the absurd is the most militant of all the conceptual procedures of the science of being-qua-being."1h

"Knowledge is the capacity to discern multiples within the situation which possess this or that property; properties that can be indicated by explicit phrases of the language . . . the constitutive operations of every domain of knowledge are discernment . . . and classification . . . Discernment concerns the connection between language and presented or presentable realities. It is oriented towards presentation. Classification concerns the connection between the language and the parts of the situation, the multiples of multiples. It is oriented towards representation.
"We shall posit that discernment is founded upon the capacity to judge (to speak of properties), and classification is founded upon the capacity to link judgements together (to speak of parts)."1i POINCARE

" . . . [A] truth groups together all the terms of the situation which are positively connected to the event."1j

"The process of a truth thus entirely escapes ontology. . . the Heideggerian thesis of an originary co-belonging of being . . . and truth . . . must be abandoned. The sayable of being is disjunct from the sayable of truth."1k HEIDEGGER

" . . . [A] truth is an un-presented part of the situation."1l

" . . . [D]efinition of a subject: that which decides an undecidable from the standpoint of an indiscernible."1m



Alain Badiou. Being and Event. Translated by Oliver Feltham. New York, NY: Continuum, 2005. (Originally published in French as L'etre et l'evenement. Editions du Seuil, 1988.)



Ethics: An Essay on the Understanding of Evil.

Manifesto for Philosophy.

Number and Numbers.


Infinite Thought: Truth and the Return to Philosophy.

The Concept of Model: An Introduction to the Materialist Epistemology of Mathematics.

Briefings on Existence: A Short Treatise on Transitory Ontology.

Handbook of Inaesthetics.

St. Paul: The Foundation of Universalism.


The Century.


* Italics in the original.

1 Alain Badiou (1937-). Being and Event. Translated by Oliver Feltham. New York, NY: Continuum, 2005. (Originally published in French as L'etre et l'evenement, Editions du Seuil, 1988.
Part I Being: Multiple and Void. Plato/Cantor
a Mediation 2: Plato, at 34.
b Meditation 4: The Void: Proper name of being, at 54.
c Meditation 3: The Void, substractive suture of being, at 67.
Part II Being: Excess, State of the Situation, One/Multiple, Whole/Parts, or . . .
d Meditation 9: The State of the Historico-social Situation, at 104.
Part IV The Event: History and Ultra-one
e Meditation 19: Mallarmé, at 197.
Part V The Event: Intervention and Fidelity. Pascal/Choice; Hlderlin/Deduction
f Meditation 20: The Intervention: Illegal choice of a name for the event, Logic of the two, temporal foundation, at 211.
g Meditation 24: Deduction as Operator of Ontological Fidelity, at 243.
Ibid., at 252.
Part VII The Generic: Indiscernible and Truth. The Event -- P. J. Cohen
i Meditation 31: The Thought of the Generic and Being in Truth, at 328.
Ibid., at 335.
k Meditation 33: The Matheme of the Indiscernible: P. J. Cohen's strategy, at 355.
Part VIII Forcing: Truth and the Subject. Beyond Lacan
l Meditation 35: Subject and Truth: indiscernibility and nomination, at 396.
Ibid., at 407.