PGH I: Subjectivity and Objectivity
Giorgio Agamben (1942– )
the "L1culty" for death (Fiihigkeit des 1iJdes, in the words of Hegel). This con- the connection between language and death could not be illuminated without a.
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The concept of biopolitics carried forth from the work of Michel Foucault informs many of his writings. Agamben was educated at the University of Rome , where in he wrote an unpublished laurea thesis on the political thought of Simone Weil. During this period, Agamben began to elaborate his primary concerns, although their political bearings were not yet made explicit. In — he was a fellow at the Warburg Institute , University of London , due to the courtesy of Frances Yates , whom he met through Italo Calvino. During this fellowship, Agamben began to develop his second book, Stanzas Agamben edited Benjamin's collected works in Italian translation until , and called Benjamin's thought "the antidote that allowed me to survive Heidegger". Benjamin had left these manuscripts to Georges Bataille when he fled Paris shortly before his death.
Skip to content. Skip to navigation. Coming soon. A formidable and influential work, Language and Death sheds an original light on issues central to Continental philosophy, literary theory, deconstruction, hermeneutics, and speech-act theory. Focusing on the incompatible philosophical systems of Hegel and Heidegger within the space of negativity, Giorgio Agamben offers a rigorous reading of numerous philosophical and poetic works to examine how these issues have been traditionally explored.
Giorgio Agamben is one of the leading figures in Italian philosophy and radical political theory, and in recent years, his work has had a deep impact on contemporary scholarship in a number of disciplines in the Anglo-American intellectual world. Beyond this philosophical heritage, Agamben also engages in multilayered discussions of the Jewish Torah and Christian biblical texts, Greek and Roman law, Midrashic literature, as well as of a number of Western literary figures and poets, including Dante, Holderlin, Kafka, Pessoa, and Caproni to name but a few. In this, Agamben argues that the contemporary age is marked by the destruction or loss of experience, in which the banality of everyday life cannot be experienced per se but only undergone, a condition which is in part brought about by the rise of modern science and the split between the subject of experience and of knowledge that it entails. Against this destruction of experience, which is also extended in modern philosophies of the subject such as Kant and Husserl, Agamben argues that the recuperation of experience entails a radical rethinking of experience as a question of language rather than of consciousness, since it is only in language that the subject has its site and origin. Infancy, then, conceptualizes an experience of being without language, not in a temporal or developmental sense of preceding the acquisition of language in childhood, but rather, as a condition of experience that precedes and continues to reside in any appropriation of language. Agamben continues this reflection on the self-referentiality of language as a means of transforming the link between language and metaphysics that underpins Western philosophical anthropology in Language and Death, originally published in While this collapse of metaphysics into ethics is increasingly evident as nihilism, contemporary thought has yet to escape from this condition.