French philosopher Louis Pierre Althusser (1918 -1990) helped define the politico-theoretical conjuncture of pre- and post-1968. Today, there is a recrudescence of interest in his thought, especially in light of his later work, published in English as Philosophy of the Encounter (Verso, 2006). This has led to renewed debates on the reformulation of conflicting notions of materialism, on the event as both philosophical concept and political construction, and on the nature of politics and the political. These original essays by leading scholars aim to provide a new assessment of Althusser's thought, especially in relation to contemporary debates. Organized in four sections that represent the main currents in Althusser's scholarship, the book discusses materialism and the different formulations of the relationship between politics and philosophy, Althusser's interpretations of political thinkers (including Machiavelli, Deleuze and Gramsci), the resources he provides to critique political economy and politics in post-Marxist thought, and the theorization of ideology and politics. Encountering Althusser is a groundbreaking resource that highlights Althusser's continuing relevance to contemporary radical thought.
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