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Sur l'étiologie du "sujet grammatical" la piste éléatique

Abstract : In the Twilight of the Idols, Friedrich Nietzsche blames the “Eleatic concept of Being” for the “error” of our belief in the existence of the “subject”. He also accuses language of being the “perpetual advocate” of this error in as much as “every word, every sentence we utter speaks in its favour!”. A consideration of the grammatical subject makes the proposition seems plausible. For as a “sign” of “something”, the grammatical subject obliges us to refer to a “signified” which is henadic, univocal and atomic and to that extent a replica of the Eleatic “One”. And yet, while this is true, the grammatical subject admits all the qualities the Eleates denied Being, e.g., multiplicity, mutability, mortality, etc. Does this inconsistency mean that Nietzsche was somehow mistaken? No, all it means is that, in its aphoristic formulation, his proposition is over-determined. For the Eleatic concept of Being does indeed constitute one of the basic organising principles of our language and for that reason fundamentally conditions our experience of what language mediates. But the ontology of the Eleates didn’t and couldn’t exercise this power without making compromises with non-Eleatic and even anti-Eleatic schools of thought, and that’s where this paper places its question marks. How did a doctrine which is so otherworldly, anti-natural and anti-human become a part of our language and in that guise a key to the way we experience ourselves, others, things and the world? What compromises did the Eleates make with non-Eleatic doctrines so that their anti-natural and anti-human ideal became the basis of the way we interface with everything language mediates? Why is it illusory to believe that, despite these compromises, any use of language allows us an experience of world or self which isn’t radically Eleatic? And supposing we want to liberate language from the anti-naturalism its Eleatic ancestory makes a part of it, what must we do?
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Fionn Bennett. Sur l'étiologie du "sujet grammatical" la piste éléatique. Référence, conscience et sujet énonciateur = reference, consciousness ans the speaking subject, Reims : Épure, Éditions et presses universitaires de Reims, pp.353-366, 2012, Res per nomen, 978-2-915271-50-8. ⟨hal-02643890⟩

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