Human-in-the-last-instance: François Laruelle’s non-philosophical humanism

Sutherland, Thomas (2014) Human-in-the-last-instance: François Laruelle’s non-philosophical humanism. In: Australasian Society for Continental Philosophy Annual Conference, 4 - 6 December, 2014, Australian Catholic University, Melbourne.

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Item Type:Conference or Workshop contribution (Paper)
Item Status:Live Archive


There is an odd tension in François Laruelle’s work: on the one hand, his dense, jargon-laden, often seemingly impenetrable writing proves daunting to even those familiar with the turgid prose of much continental thought; yet on the other, the express purpose of his non-philosophical project is to recover a decidedly ordinary mode of thought - that of the individual ego - which is ungraspable through the abstractions of philosophy. Opposed to the abstractions that inevitably constitute philosophy’s universalized image of humanity, Laruelle instead argues ‘the individual is the undivided without remainder or excess, that which is nothing-but-undivided and which precedes a priori all forms of universality’, such that the problematic of the individual is ‘founded on a thinking of the One rather than of Being’. The task of non-philosophy, therefore, is not to think about the One (which would be to reduce the human individual to Being), but to think according to the One - through what he refers to as the force-(of)-thought - whereby the auto-positioned sufficiency of philosophy is suspended, and philosophy is understood as occasional material that is determined-in-the-last-instance by the radical immanence of the One, which is not a subject in the philosophical sense, but a living, flesh-and-blood human. The purpose of this paper, then, is to ask to what extent Laruelle’s non-philosophy is able to escape (or at the very least, rethink) the clash between human and anti-humanism (and now also post-humanism) as it manifests in the continental tradition.

Keywords:continental philosophy, non-philosophy, François Laruelle
Subjects:V Historical and Philosophical studies > V500 Philosophy
Divisions:College of Arts > Lincoln School of Film & Media > Lincoln School of Film & Media (Media)
ID Code:26935
Deposited On:10 Apr 2017 08:19

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