Nihil Unbound pp 118-149 | Cite as

Being Nothing



If realism has become philosophically unintelligible for post-Kantian European philosophy, then the singular virtue of François Laruelle’s work consists in showing how the resources of transcendental philosophy can be turned against idealism in order to render transcendental realism thinkable. Where the speculative materialisms proposed by Badiou and Meillassoux circumvent the forced choice between metaphysics and critique at the cost of privileging discursive inscription or rehabilitating intellectual intuition, Laruelle provides us with some of the resources required for a version of transcendental realism that would not be vitiated by the idealism of inscription or intuition. But it will be necessary to criticize Laruelle’s own concessions to transcendental doxa in order to wrest a viable conception of realism from his work. More precisely, we shall try to extract from his writings a de-phenomenologized conception of the real as ‘being-nothing’. This process of extraction will necessarily conflict with much of what Laruelle says about his own enterprise; indeed, in what follows, we will contest Laruelle’s characterization of his project as ‘non-philosophy’.


Radical Immanence Relative Autonomy Transcendental Realism Transcendent Objectification Intellectual Intuition 
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© Ray Brassier 2007

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