The Marxist hypothesis: A response to Alain Badiou’s Communist Hypothesis

<a href="">The Marxist hypothesis: A response to Alain Badiou’s <i>Communist Hypothesis</i></a>

The Charnel-House

IMAGE: Cover to Alain Badiou’s
Communist Hypothesis (2010)

Platypus Review 29 | November 2010

Chris Cutrone

Against Badiou

Alain Badiou’s recent book (2010) is titled with the phrase promoted by his and Slavoj Žižek’s work for the last few years, “the communist hypothesis.”[1] This is also the title of Badiou’s 2008 essay in New Left Review[2] on the historical significance of the 2007 election of Nicolas Sarkozy to the French Presidency.[3] There, Badiou explains his approach to communism as follows:

What is the communist hypothesis? In its generic sense, given in its canonic Manifesto, “communist” means, first, that the logic of class — the fundamental subordination of labour to a dominant class, the arrangement that has persisted since Antiquity — is not inevitable; it can be overcome. The communist hypothesis is that a different collective organization is practicable, one that will eliminate the…

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