Badiou has already been established as a prominent and important contemporary philosopher, and this book shows that this reputation is well deserved. In The Rebirth of History he gives an insightful reading of the flood of riots and similar political actions of the past few years, revealing their historical precursors as well as their revolutionary possibilities. This book also serves as a concise summary of some of his theoretical concepts—making it a good introduction to Badiou's fiery and original thought. —Recommended by Luke, City Lights Books
Testing the winds of history blowing from the Arab revolts.
In the uprisings of the Arab world, Alain Badiou discerns echoes of the European revolutions of 1848. In both cases, the object was to overthrow despotic regimes maintained by the great powers—regimes designed to impose the will of financial oligarchies. Both events occurred after what was commonly thought to be the end of a revolutionary epoch: in 1815, the final defeat of Napoleon; and in 1989, the fall of the Soviet Union. But the revolutions of 1848 proclaimed for a century and a half the return of revolutionary thought and action. Likewise, the uprisings underway today herald a worldwide resurgence in the liberating force of the masses—despite the attempts of the 'international community' to neutralize its power.
Badiou's book salutes this reawakening of history, weaving examples from the Arab Spring and elsewhere into a global analysis of the return of emancipatory universalism.