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Nouveauté sorélienne V, 2011

samedi 10 septembre 2011

A paru en 2011, en langue polonaise, l’ouvrage suivant de Piotr Laskowski :
Maszyny wojenne. Georges Sorel i strategie radykalnej filozofii politycznej (Varsovie, Wydawnictwo Czarna Owca).
Cet ouvrage est consultable dans le fonds Sorel de la bibliothèque du Musée social-CEDIAS, Paris.

Voici une présentation de cet ouvrage en anglais :

The book aims to reconstruct the political philosophy of Sorel in a way Deleuze analysed Bergson in his “Le bergsonisme”, i.e. to reconstruct key concepts, fields they operate in, their mutual interconnections. This is achieved by confronting Sorel with the texts that influenced him (Bergson, Vico, Nietzsche, Marx, James, French conventionalists – Poincaré, Duhem, Le Roy), the texts that refer to Sorel (Gramsci, Schmitt, Benjamin, Arendt) and finally with the texts that, it may be argued, deal with the issues that were explored by Sorel, and thus may give some new meaning to the Sorelian propositions (Deleuze, Agamben). The reason Deleuze is often invoked is not only that both Sorel and Deleuze referred to the same sources of inspration (Bergson, Nietzsche, pragmatism), but more importantly that the stake of their thinking seems to be the same – autonomy, singularity, and difference. The political philosophy of Sorel is presented in the close relationship with his philosophy of science, strongly influenced by the “English school” in physics (Maxwell mostly), French conventionalists, and kinematics of Franz Reuleaux from whom the concept of machine was taken. The book is meant to confront the dominating interpretation of Sorel’s philosophy as irrationalist, nebulous, and in the end – protofascist. In the dialogue with Deleuze, Sorel is presented as a possible companion for antiauthoritarian thinkers and activists of our time. The “War Machines” consist of three parts : Introduction, the main essay entitled “Science – machine – symbol – myth” and the final two pages “Instead of the ending”. It is 234 pages long in the Polish edition.

The Introduction gives a general review of the works on Sorel (Schlomo Sand, the “Mil neuf cent” authors, J.L. Stanley, J.R. Jennings, Zeev Sternhell), a short biographical sketch, and the explanation of the method of the book. The main essay, divided into 45 subchapters, starts with the invocation of one of Sorel’s favourite literary texts : “The Temptation of St. Anthony by Flaubert”. Then it deals with the following issues :

1. Sorel’s “epistemological writings”, criticism of Newtonian paradigm in physics, Maxwellian models, and kinematics of Reuleaux.

2. Early marxist writings of Sorel.

3. Sorel’s attitude towards the psychology of Lombroso.

4. “Etude sur Vico” and the position of Vico in the Sorelian philosophy.

5. The discussion with French conventionalists.

6. Bergson, the notion of durée, a difference between possible and virtual, the concept of image.

7. The morality of producers and the Nietzschean ethics.

8. The Sorelian notion of diremption, its Hegelian roots and antihegelian meaning (Sorel and Proudhon).

9. Diremption and Nietzsche’s “On Truth and Lies in a Nonmoral Sense”, and Shklovsky’s ostranienie (estrangement).

10. Sorel and Benjamin’s “On the Concept of History”.

11. Sorelian notion of the miracle. William James and the American pragmatism.

12. Sorelian miracle and the Event of Badiou.

13. Sorelian refutation of magic. The illusions of progress.

14. Agamben and the notion of experience. Sorel and the pessimism. The philosophy of Pascal.

15. Sorelian notion of cité. The problem of dispositif. Cité as a Deluzian socius.

16. Sorel and the “strategy of desire” (Reich, Deleuze, Hakim Bey).

17. Sorelian notion of violence, as opposed to the force. The violence as a Deleuzian war machine.

18. The violence and the anger of Sloterdijk.

19. Sorelian myth. Its critics. Myth of the general strike and inoperosità of Agamben. Benjamin’s “Critique of Violence”. Melville’s Bartleby.

The author :

Piotr Laskowski I have got my PhD in Egyptology at the University of Warsaw (with the Oxford University reviewer of the thesis). Currently I work at the Jagiellonian University in Cracow, Poland. In 2006 I have published in Polish “Szkice z dziejow anarchizmu” (“Essays in the history of anarchism”, 2nd edition in 2007), which were very well received both by reviewers and public. I am also a co-founder of a “free school”, Jacek Kuron High School in Warsaw, its first headteacher (2006-2010), ans still a teacher there. I have written a number of articles on the libertarian pedagogy.

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