Riley Diesh 10/6/ Presenting the Unpresentable Lyotard proposes modernity continually requires a “shattering of belief” and “discovery of lack of reality” as. subverts this form at a deeper level in the effort to present this unpresentable, Lyotard’s figuring of the postmodern sublime depicts “good form” as a. “salace,” a . Essentially, in both works Lyotard understands the Kantian sublime as legitimating .. of presentation” which attempt, in bad faith, “to present the unpresentable.

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Jean-François Lyotard (1924—1998)

For Lyotard change is life affirming, whereas the stable structures that inhibit change are nihilistic and life denying. Rather than emphasize human lostness and yearning for presence employing regular forms that indeed reinforce such nostalgia, presenhing art delights in constantly challenging received forms: Return to top of page.

Reflections on Time, trans. Events always exceed interpretation; there is always something “left over” that an interpretation does not account for.

Lyotard sees these prwsenting as limiting and nihilistic, in the sense that they deny the full possibilities of the expression of intensities. Legitimation of knowledge by performativity terrorises the production of ideas.

Lyotard’s concept of postmodernism in the arts relates more to what is usually called modernism in the arts.


The discursive structure of language, therefore, needs reference at some points to sensual experience. He surmises that a nationalist, democratic revolution will only lead to new forms of social inequality and domination, and insists that a socialist revolution is necessary. Let us take Australian Aborigines as an example. Lyotard, along with Souyris, became a member of the splinter group Pouvoir Ouvrier Worker’s Powerbut resigned in Paganism is godless politics; it is the abandonment of universal judgement for specific, plural judgements.

The Subject and the Inhuman Like many other prominent French thinkers of his generation such prexenting Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida and Gilles DeleuzeLyotard develops critiques of the subject and of humanism. Lyotqrd project of Socialisme ou Barbarie was to provide theoretical resources to contribute to socialist revolution, critiquing other existing socialist strands particularly Stalinism and the French communist party as a hindrance to revolution, and with a particular emphasis on the critique of bureaucracy.


These phrase regimes have no outside criteria for comparison. Lyotard identifies the problem with which he is dealing – the variable in the status of knowledge – as one of legitimation.

In relation to research, this means the production of new ideas by going against or outside of established norms, of making new moves in language games, changing the rules of language games and inventing new games. Lyotard instead takes Malraux as a set of heterogenous elements texts, political activities, personal relationships, etcwhich he, as author, consciously unifies through the creation of a fictional character. In “Lessons in Paganism” he claims that all discourse is narrative; all theory, all politics, all law, are merely a collection of stories.

Lyotard uses Wittgenstein’s idea of language games to show that reason and representation cannot be totalizing. Harvey, Robert and Lawrence R. In theory, politics, and cultural conventions, structured dispositions take themselves to be the actual structures of reality or “correct” interpretations, thus limiting the possibilities of change.

Libidinal Economy is an unusual and difficult presentting, and encompasses a complex set of theories concerning politics, economics, theory, academic style, and readings of Marx and Freud. In the libidinal philosophy Lyotard uses the idea of libidinal energy to describe events and the way they are interpreted or exploited, and he develops a philosophy of society and theory in terms of the lyottard of libidinal energies.

Lyotard, Jean-François | Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy

Avant-garde art, exemplifying the novatio sublime, is the possibility of infinite experiment and development which, by virtue of being infinite, is itself unpresentable.

This is what the ‘voice of reason’ says in sublime feeling, and this is what is truly exalting. Presses Universitaires de France, We cannot encompass it by thinking, and so it remains indiscernable or unnameable, undecidable, indeterminate and unpresentable. He suggests that structured, abstract conceptual thought has dominated philosophy since Plato, denigrating sensual experience.

Reason, for its part, seeks, unreasonably, to violate the interdict it imposes on itself and which is strictly critical, the interdict that prohibits it from finding objects corresponding to its concepts in sensible intuition.

According to Lyotard, postmodernity is characterised by the end of metanarratives. On the one hand Lyotard criticises the dehumanising effects of the progress of science and technology that are themselves bound up with the idea of human progress, and on the other he affirms the dehumanising forces that open up our thinking to more than a simple definition of the human.


An example of a sublime object for Kant would be a mountain; we can have an idea of a mountain, but not a sensory intuition of it as a whole. Knowledge is produced in order to be sold, and is consumed in order to fuel a new production. Recent Comments omspencer on Concluding boutiquebrandbelt. Postmodern sciences, which concern themselves with undecidables, the limits of precise control, conflicts characterized by incomplete information, “fracta,” catastrophes, and pragmatic paradoxes, continue to undermine performativity in the form of determinism.

This rejection is manifested in the philosophy of paganism that preceded Lyotard’s postmodernism.

Lyotard takes Barnett Newman’s work as a paragon of postmodern, avant-garde art. Following to some extent philosophers of science Thomas Kuhn and Paul Feyerabend, Lyotard argues that the performativity criterion does not accurately capture the kind of knowledge developed in the sciences nor the way such knowledge develops.

The Slave Ship Keith Crome and James Williams Edinburgh: And yet, these systems deny their own origins in intense and aleatory libidinal energy, taking themselves to be permanent and stable.

His thought remains pivotal in contemporary debates surrounding philosophy, politics, social theory, cultural studies, art and aesthetics. In postmodernity, knowledge has become primarily a saleable commodity.

His works can be roughly divided into three categories: Lyotard sees reality in terms of unpredictable happenings eventsrather than structured regularities. The exhibition collected works which explored connections between the media, art, space, and matter.

Jean-François Lyotard and the Sublime, Part Two

Manchester University Press, In the prezenting on Algeria, Lyotard applies this project to the French occupation, trying to determine the potential for socialist revolution arising from this situation. Scientific knowledge is legitimated by certain scientific criteria – the repeatability of experiments, etc. In Nietzschean terms, Lyotard says that judgement is an expression of the will to power.