A Critical reading of Alan Badiou: relativism in Badiou's theory of truth

Yenisoy Şahin, Eylem
The purpose of this thesis is to develop a critical reading of Badiou’s theory of truth. Contemporary popular trends such as postmodernism and anti-philosophy champion the principles of pluralism and contingency. They use these against Hegel’s conception of history and theory of ‘relational totality’. Badiou agrees with these trends. But he criticizes their relativist theory of truth. He wants to provide an ‘objective’ foundation for ‘truth’. The question I wish to explore in this thesis is then to analyze critically Badiou’s work to find out whether he succeeds? To do this I am presenting Badiou’s philosophical sources in ancient and modern philosophy and his main concepts he relies on. I am analyzing in particular in depth Badiou’s understanding of ontology and phenomenology. To explain his concept of truth, I am analyzing his concepts of ‘void’, ‘plurality’, ‘infinity’. However, to make sense of his theory of truth more fully, I am looking also at his conceptions of ‘event’ and subject’, which are the main components of his theory of truth. After having analyzed his theory of of truth, I am looking at his conception of emancipatory politics, to see how his conception of truth works in his practical philosophy.


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Citation Formats
E. Yenisoy Şahin, “A Critical reading of Alan Badiou: relativism in Badiou’s theory of truth,” Ph.D. - Doctoral Program, Middle East Technical University, 2012.