Renowned philosopher Badiou discusses his work

Renowned French philosopher and author Alain Badiou of the École Normale Supérieure, will visit the University of Glasgow this Friday to take part in a conference discussing his works.

The event on Friday, February 13 and Saturday, February 14 coincides with the publication of the English translation of his play ‘Incident at Antioch’, a striking work of political theatre staging the ‘turn’ of an ancient apostle in the context of haunting contemporary questions about revolutionary creativity and political violence.

The play, translated by Susan Spitzer, will be discussed along with closely related themes within Badiou’s larger work about the emergence of new political forms and that fidelity without which new forms do not come to be.
Participants include: John Barclay (University of Durham), Ward Blanton (University of Glasgow), Patrick Lyons (University of Glasgow), Kenneth Reinhard (UCLA), Susan Spitzer (Los Angeles), Peter Thompson (University of Sheffield/Ernst Bloch Centre).

Vassiliki Kolocotroni, Senior Lecturer in English Literature, University of Glasgow, said: "We are delighted to welcome one of the world’s foremost contemporary philosophical thinkers to the University.

"Trained as a mathematician, Alain Badiou is one of the foremost European philosophers writing today. Influenced by Plato, Lucretius, Hegel, Lacan and Deleuze, he is a rigorous and outspoken critic of both the analytic and postmodern schools of thought.

"His philosophy seeks to expose and make sense of the potential of radical innovation in every situation and, unlike many of those schooled in anti-humanist principles, he has never been tempted to celebrate the apparent end of philosophy, to question the possibility of metaphysics, or to qualify the classical attributes of truth."

The event is sponsored by the Arts & Humanities Graduate School of the University of Glasgow; the Biblical Studies Program and Centre for Literature, Theology & the Arts within the Department of Theology & Religious Studies; the Legal Theory group within the School of Law; the Critical Theory and Spiritual Practice Network; and the Ernst Bloch Centre at the University of Sheffield.

The conference is free and open to the public.

13th February, 2009 (Western Infirmary Lecture Theatre)
Reading of Selections from Alain Badiou’s Incident at Antioch
Interview with Alain Badiou
Ward Blanton (Glasgow) and Susan Spitzer (Los Angeles)

14th February, 2009 (Wolfson Medical School, Seminar Rm 1)
The Use of Forcing: Badiou, Paul and Messianism
Kenneth Reinhard (University of California, Los Angeles)
Paul, Badiou and the Event as Gift
John Barclay (University of Durham)
Ernst Bloch and Aristotle’s dynámei ón: Not-Yetness, Hope and the Promise of the Universal
Peter Thompson (University of Sheffield, Ernst Bloch Centre)
Theatre and Politics, Althusser to Badiou
Patrick Lyons (University of Glasgow)
Response & Invitation to Open Discussion
Johan Van der Walt (University of Glasgow, School of Law)

For maps and travel information, see

First published: 9 February 2009