The One

Alain Badiou

The One
Columbia University Press
United States
31 October 2023

The One

Alain Badiou

Alain Badiou's 1983-1984 lecture series on "the One" is the earliest of his seminars that he has chosen to publish. It focuses on the philosophical concept of oneness in the works of Descartes, Plato, and Kant-a crucial foil for his signature metaphysical concept, the multiple. Badiou declares that there is no "One": there is no fundamental unit of being; being is inherently multiple.

What is novel in Badiou's view of multiplicity is his reliance on mathematics, and set theory in particular. A set is a collection of things-yet, as he observes, it often is taken to "count as one" operationally for the purposes of mathematical transformations. In this seminar, distinguishing between "the One" and "counting as one" emerges as essential to Badiou's ontological project. His analysis of reflections on oneness in Descartes, Plato, and Kant prefigures core arguments of his defining work, Being and Event.

Showcasing the seeds of Badiou's key ideas and later thought, The One features singular readings, breathtaking theorizations, and frequently astonishing offhand remarks.

This item is in-stock at 3 shops and will ship in 3-4 days

Our stock data is updated periodically, and availability may change throughout the day for in-demand items. Please call the relevant shop for the most current stock information. Prices are subject to change without notice.

Sign in or become a Readings Member to add this title to a wishlist.