BADIOU AGINST SCIENTISM AND RELIGIONISM: traversing anti-philosophy

In LOGICS OF WORLDS Badiou tells us:

“the traversal of the antiphilosophy of Lacan still remains a necessary exercise for those who are breaking free from the reactive convergences of religion and of scientism” (page 523, translation modified by me).

There is an unequal treatment given to religion and to scientism in this quote. Scientism is the suture of science and philosophy, whereas religion is treated as if it were in itself a case of suture. It seems preferable to talk of breaking free from scientism and from religionism, where religionism is the illegitimate suture of religion and philosophy, bending the criteria of truth of philosophy to those of religious doctrine. As Badiou tells us in his HEIDEGGER seminar: “”no doctrine is ever the condition of philosophy” (my translation). This applies not just to religion, but also to science, love, poetry, and politics.

There remains the question of the dated and parochial reference to Lacan, but I think that this philosophical maxim has more general scope. In Latourese it would read: the traversal of the beings of metamorphosis still remains a necessary trial for those who are breaking free from the illegitimate crossing of religionism and scientism. This is precisely the method proposed by Deleuze and Guattari in their book WHAT IS PHILOSOPHY? A further convergence between Badiou and Deleuze and Guattari can be seen if we recall that this traversal of metamorphic beings is also called the traversal of “non-philosophy” in WHAT IS PHILOSOPHY. Badiou prefers to talk in terms of “anti-philosophy”, but this is his term for what Deleuze and Guattari, and Laruelle, call “non-philosophy”.

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