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Difficult AtheismPost-Theological Thinking in Alain Badiou, Jean-Luc Nancy and Quentin Meillassoux$
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Christopher Watkin

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780748640577

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748640577.001.0001

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Introduction: Atheisms Today

Introduction: Atheisms Today

(p.1) Introduction: Atheisms Today
Difficult Atheism

Christopher Watkin

Edinburgh University Press

This introductory chapter argues that the term ‘atheism’ no longer adequately describes the moves being made in contemporary French thought to follow the death of God, and that the term ‘atheism’ is itself an unhelpfully ambiguous word that is used to designate two very different positions, identified as ‘imitative’ and ‘residual’ atheism. Imitative atheism seeks to replace God with a supposedly atheistic placeholder, retaining structures of thought that rely on theistic premises. Following Nietzsche’s and Heidegger’s critiques of this thinking, residual atheism seeks to have done with any reliance on theological assumptions or any ‘faith in Plato’.

Keywords:   Atheism, Death of God, Nietzsche, Theology

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