Here. Damned straight. Ben WoodARD conducts the interview here (sorry for mangling your name in the past Ben!). In my view, Badiou’s remarks about Laruelle are most interesting. I think he’s absolutely right: Laruelle is a dead end, a regressive move, a fall back into the project of endless critique, rather than a new opening. Time will tell. I also think Badiou is right with respect to his observations about the absence of a theory of the event among the speculative realists, though I’ll hold this thesis close to my vest for the time being. Now why the hell did he pull out of contributing to The Speculative Turn? No explanation was ever given, nor any formal withdrawal, just an end to communication. For the theorist of truth-procedures…

UPDATE [3:37 PM, 9 September 2009]: Since I have received some rather outraged responses to my suggestion that Laruelle is a regressive move for SR, I suppose I should clarify why I believe this. The last forty or fifty years of Continental philosophy, especially in the English speaking world, have been dominated by philosophy as textual analysis. Philosophy has been practiced as the analysis of texts. Whether we are talking about the predominance of hermeneutics in the reading of philosophical texts, or the reign of deconstruction as textual analysis, philosophy has not been dominated by theory building, but rather the analysis of already existing texts. And if one wants to argue that Laruelle is not doing textual analysis, the point stands simply in that he makes philosophies the object of his analysis. If non-philosophy is a regressive move, then this is because it has every likelihood of repeating this institutional structure as the primary mode of philosophical practice. Philosophical practice becomes trapped in the rut of being about philosophies, rather than engaging in theory building. Insofar as Laruelle’s non-philosophy takes philosophy as its object of analysis, it promises to continue this rut of looking backwards towards the philosophical tradition, continuing engagement with the texts of that tradition, and discouraging active theory building for its own sake. This is an institutional structure I would like to see pass. The point is not that we shouldn’t talk about other philosophers, that we shouldn’t write monographs on other philosophers, etc. All of that will remain and should remain. The hope is that we’ll see the passing of the day where philosophy is seen primarily as talk about texts, rather than as an attempt to comprehend the world. One of the most promising things about SR is that it marks the return of genuine metaphysics and a movement beyond the practice of endless commentary.

I look forward to the day when it is exceedingly rare for graduate students in Continental programs to write dissertations about another philosopher. To be sure, work will continue to draw substantially on other thinkers, to engage with other thinkers, and all the rest. But what will have passed, what will have become rare, will be the idea that work should be about another thinker rather than an issue, a question, or a problem.

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