On Alain Badiou’s ‘Critique of Religion’

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

This paper examines Alain Badiou’s critical engagement with religion. It is argued that there are two central points at which religion enters the scene of Badiou’s philosophy. First, in his critique, the ‘motif of finitude’ Badiou repeatedly refers to religion, claiming that ‘the obsession with finitude is a remnant of the tyranny of the sacred’. Second, Badiou stages his attempt to regenerate philosophy against the proclamation of its end as a confrontation with the religion, through philosophy’s detachment from the poetization of philosophy and its reattachment to mathematics. By examining these two points, the paper aims to encircle Badiou’s notion of religion and thus clarify the role it plays in his philosophical system. This paper suggests that his notion of religion is a by-product of his polemics and therefore needs to be ‘extracted’ from his writings. Hence, the ‘critique of religion’ present in Badiou’s work is not straightforward and explicit critique. Another central aspect of Badiou’s critique of religion is related to his effort to separate the concept of truth from the category of meaning, which he understands as the emblem of religion. The paper sheds light on this matter and its setting in Jacques Lacan’s considerations on religion.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Philosophy and Theology
Volume79
Issue number1-2
Pages (from-to)36-59
Number of pages24
ISSN2169-2327
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Epub ahead of print. Published online: 28. August 2017

Keywords

  • Badiou
  • Religion
  • Meaning
  • Truth
  • Death of God
  • Finitude
  • Infinity
  • Romanticism

Cite this

@article{80a39aa213be42e29a5596181a592fbd,
title = "On Alain Badiou’s ‘Critique of Religion’",
abstract = "This paper examines Alain Badiou’s critical engagement with religion. It is argued that there are two central points at which religion enters the scene of Badiou’s philosophy. First, in his critique, the ‘motif of finitude’ Badiou repeatedly refers to religion, claiming that ‘the obsession with finitude is a remnant of the tyranny of the sacred’. Second, Badiou stages his attempt to regenerate philosophy against the proclamation of its end as a confrontation with the religion, through philosophy’s detachment from the poetization of philosophy and its reattachment to mathematics. By examining these two points, the paper aims to encircle Badiou’s notion of religion and thus clarify the role it plays in his philosophical system. This paper suggests that his notion of religion is a by-product of his polemics and therefore needs to be ‘extracted’ from his writings. Hence, the ‘critique of religion’ present in Badiou’s work is not straightforward and explicit critique. Another central aspect of Badiou’s critique of religion is related to his effort to separate the concept of truth from the category of meaning, which he understands as the emblem of religion. The paper sheds light on this matter and its setting in Jacques Lacan’s considerations on religion.",
keywords = "Badiou, Religion, Meaning, Truth, Death of God, Finitude, Infinity, Romanticism, Badiou, Religion, Meaning, Truth, Death of God, Finitude, Infinity, Romanticism",
author = "Karlsen, {Mads Peter}",
note = "Epub ahead of print. Published online: 28. August 2017",
year = "2018",
doi = "10.1080/21692327.2017.1364662",
language = "English",
volume = "79",
pages = "36--59",
journal = "International Journal of Philosophy and Theology",
issn = "2169-2327",
publisher = "CRC Press/Balkema",
number = "1-2",

}

On Alain Badiou’s ‘Critique of Religion’. / Karlsen, Mads Peter.

In: International Journal of Philosophy and Theology, Vol. 79, No. 1-2, 2018, p. 36-59.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - On Alain Badiou’s ‘Critique of Religion’

AU - Karlsen, Mads Peter

N1 - Epub ahead of print. Published online: 28. August 2017

PY - 2018

Y1 - 2018

N2 - This paper examines Alain Badiou’s critical engagement with religion. It is argued that there are two central points at which religion enters the scene of Badiou’s philosophy. First, in his critique, the ‘motif of finitude’ Badiou repeatedly refers to religion, claiming that ‘the obsession with finitude is a remnant of the tyranny of the sacred’. Second, Badiou stages his attempt to regenerate philosophy against the proclamation of its end as a confrontation with the religion, through philosophy’s detachment from the poetization of philosophy and its reattachment to mathematics. By examining these two points, the paper aims to encircle Badiou’s notion of religion and thus clarify the role it plays in his philosophical system. This paper suggests that his notion of religion is a by-product of his polemics and therefore needs to be ‘extracted’ from his writings. Hence, the ‘critique of religion’ present in Badiou’s work is not straightforward and explicit critique. Another central aspect of Badiou’s critique of religion is related to his effort to separate the concept of truth from the category of meaning, which he understands as the emblem of religion. The paper sheds light on this matter and its setting in Jacques Lacan’s considerations on religion.

AB - This paper examines Alain Badiou’s critical engagement with religion. It is argued that there are two central points at which religion enters the scene of Badiou’s philosophy. First, in his critique, the ‘motif of finitude’ Badiou repeatedly refers to religion, claiming that ‘the obsession with finitude is a remnant of the tyranny of the sacred’. Second, Badiou stages his attempt to regenerate philosophy against the proclamation of its end as a confrontation with the religion, through philosophy’s detachment from the poetization of philosophy and its reattachment to mathematics. By examining these two points, the paper aims to encircle Badiou’s notion of religion and thus clarify the role it plays in his philosophical system. This paper suggests that his notion of religion is a by-product of his polemics and therefore needs to be ‘extracted’ from his writings. Hence, the ‘critique of religion’ present in Badiou’s work is not straightforward and explicit critique. Another central aspect of Badiou’s critique of religion is related to his effort to separate the concept of truth from the category of meaning, which he understands as the emblem of religion. The paper sheds light on this matter and its setting in Jacques Lacan’s considerations on religion.

KW - Badiou

KW - Religion

KW - Meaning

KW - Truth

KW - Death of God

KW - Finitude

KW - Infinity

KW - Romanticism

KW - Badiou

KW - Religion

KW - Meaning

KW - Truth

KW - Death of God

KW - Finitude

KW - Infinity

KW - Romanticism

UR - https://sfx-45cbs.hosted.exlibrisgroup.com/45cbs?url_ver=Z39.88-2004&url_ctx_fmt=info:ofi/fmt:kev:mtx:ctx&ctx_enc=info:ofi/enc:UTF-8&ctx_ver=Z39.88-2004&rfr_id=info:sid/sfxit.com:azlist&sfx.ignore_date_threshold=1&rft.object_id=2560000000093565&rft.object_portfolio_id=&svc.holdings=yes&svc.fulltext=yes

U2 - 10.1080/21692327.2017.1364662

DO - 10.1080/21692327.2017.1364662

M3 - Journal article

VL - 79

SP - 36

EP - 59

JO - International Journal of Philosophy and Theology

JF - International Journal of Philosophy and Theology

SN - 2169-2327

IS - 1-2

ER -