This lecture responds to criticisms that Spinoza cannot account for vulnerability since he does not have a strong enough conception of negativity that could account for loss and mourning (Butler). This lecture argues that affects, as with the social in Spinoza, support the conception of relational individuals, and that elements of negativity both in Spinoza and in Deleuze’s conception of death can help us redefine social vulnerability.
Kim Sang Ong-Van-Cung is a Professor of Modern and Contemporary Philosophy at the University Michel-de-Montaigne of Bordeaux-III in France. More information can be found at criticaltheory.berkeley.edu.
Introduction: Judith Butler, Professor of Comparative Literature, UC Berkeley