Debating Alain Badiou’s “Politics of Emancipation”: An Exchange on Communism and the Historical Moment
A panel discussion organized by the Platypus Affiliated Society, held on March 19, 2011, at Left Forum, Pace University.
Alain Badiou’s writings promoting what he calls the “communist hypothesis” have sparked growing interest and debate. In 2009, the journal Demarcations published a polemic against Badiou’s political philosophy, arguing that this was a politics locked within the confines of the existing social order. In 2010, Chris Cutrone of Platypus authored a critique of the Demarcations polemic and of Badiou, raising the issue of the relationship between Marxism and communism. Bruno Bosteels, author of the forthcoming Badiou and Politics, brings yet another critical perspective to bear on key elements of Badiouâs âcommunist hypothesis. This panel will carry forward the debate: *Are communism’s horizons defined by the struggle for equality? *Does Badiou’s reading of the Cultural Revolution square with its actual aims and legacy? *Does Badiou’s “politics at a distance from the state” provide compass points for the challenges of making revolution in a highly globalized capitalist world?
Bruno Bosteels – Cornell University
Chris Cutrone – School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Nayi Duniya – Demarcations Journal
Saul Thomas – University of Chicago, student