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Post-Foundational Political ThoughtPolitical Difference in Nancy, Lefort, Badiou and Laclau$
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Oliver Marchart

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780748624973

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748624973.001.0001

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Retracing the Political Difference: Jean-Luc Nancy

Retracing the Political Difference: Jean-Luc Nancy

(p.61) Chapter 3 Retracing the Political Difference: Jean-Luc Nancy
Post-Foundational Political Thought

Oliver Marchart

Edinburgh University Press

Every inquiry into social post-foundationalism and the conceptual difference between politics and the political will have to take into account the work presented and elaborated at the Centre for Philosophical Research on the Political between 1980 and 1984. The Centre, founded by Philippe Lacoue-Labarthe and Jean-Luc Nancy, turned out to be the location for the most intense and influential reelaboration so far of the notion of the political, or of the difference between politics and the political. The way Claude Lefort and Alain Badiou, for instance, frame their own versions of the political difference (oftentimes in contradistinction to Nancy and Lacoue-Labarthe's version) is certainly influenced by the debates at the Centre. Using a ‘comparative’ approach it will be possible to acquire a broader understanding of the way in which the political difference unfolds within a diverse and yet related set of theoretical approaches from ‘post-structuralism’ or ‘left Heideggerianism’. This chapter explores Nancy's thought of community and the political difference, his notion of event, the danger of philosophism and the necessity of a ‘first philosophy’.

Keywords:   post-foundationalism, political difference, Jean-Luc Nancy, Philippe Lacoue-Labarthe, politics, political, post-structuralism, left Heideggerianism, community, first philosophy

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