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Epoché: A Journal for the History of Philosophy

Volume 23, Issue 1, Fall 2018

Landon Frim, Harrison Fluss
Pages 191-217
DOI: 10.5840/epoche201881126

Substance Abuse
Spinoza contra Deleuze

This paper will set out in plain language the basic ontology of “Deleuze’s Spinoza”; it will then critically examine whether such a Spinoza has, or indeed could have, ever truly existed. In this, it will be shown that Deleuze’s reading of Spinoza involves the imposition of three interlocking, formal principles. These are (1) Necessitarianism, (2) Immanence, and (3) Univocity. The uncovering of Deleuze’s use of these three principles, how they relate to one another, and what they jointly imply in terms of ontology, will occupy Part 1 of this paper. The critique of these principles from a Spinozist perspective, i.e. that their use by Deleuze is incompatible with Spinoza’s own metaphysics, will occupy Part 2 of this paper.