Friday, December 16, 2016
In NDPR Christopher Watkin reviews Catherine Malabou's Before Tomorrow: Epigenesis and Rationality.
Meillassoux's After Finitude occupies the skeptical place in Malabou's recurring skeptical/idealist dichotomy (the idealist spot being taken -- somewhat problematically -- by Derridean messianicity). Meillassoux's now famous argument about "correlationism" and its inability to account for "ancestral" time are, Malabou convincingly argues, based on a misreading of Heidegger. Meillassoux assumes that the synthesis of anteriority and posteriority in Heidegger must be "necessarily related to a psyche, a subject or an 'I think'" which, in Heidegger, it is not. Meillassoux again assumes that the early Heidegger and the late Heidegger are identical, missing Heidegger's own post-Kehre critique of the transcendental. In other words, he fails to see that philosophy itself develops epigenetically. Malabou confronts Meillassoux's mistake with a lapidary question: after which finitude?
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