Deleuze, Laruelle and the “Decision”

I argue that Deleuze already anticipated and drawn the practical implications of Laruelle’s “non-philosophical” critique of philosophies of Difference long before Laruelle published his  critique. Deleuze’s collaboration with Guattari amounted to effecting the passage from a philosophy of difference to a philosophy of multiplicity, and so Laruelle’s strictures miss their target.

I think to get his critique going Laruelle needs more than just the word “decision”, which does occur in Deleuze’s writings to make good on his critique. Deleuze’s whole philosophy is in one sense a philosophy of decisions, plural (see PERICLES AND VERDI). It’s decisions all the way up and all the way down. But these decisions are singular noetic acts, and are part of the de-prioritisation of universals. In that sense Laruelle is full of decisions too.

What you don’t get in Deleuze is the sort of totalised synthesis of all these decisions into the very technical notion of the philosophical Decision that Laruelle propounds as the universal structure of philosophy. Deleuze’s encounter with Guattari led to his passage from “saying the multiple” (which falls under the decisional structure) to “doing the multiple” (which is no longer decisional in that sense, and marks also the passage from representational pluralism to performative pluralism), and Laruelle’s critique fails.

I see no “decision” in Deleuze’s work with Guattari, no “sufficiency”, and I may add no scientism. Quite simply because in this phase of his work (doing pluralism rather than just saying it) pluralism wins out over structuralism. Laruelle however is still stuck in all three because he is still too structuralist, his pluralism is contained by his structuralism.

There is too much saying and not enough doing in Laruelle’s works.


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