Plasticity and Formlessness between Malabou and Bataille

Dalton, Benjamin (2022) Plasticity and Formlessness between Malabou and Bataille. MLN, 137 (4). pp. 673-690.

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This article stages an encounter between Catherine Malabou’s plasticité and Georges Bataille’s informe. Malabou’s transdisciplinary philosophy of plasticity observes the mutability and transformability of all forms, from aesthetic forms to the neuroplastic form of the human brain. By contrast, Bataille’s informe implies that the universe is radically formless and that all attempts to give form to it are doomed. While Malabou’s plastic approach to form and Bataille’s ideological suspicion of all form might initially seem irreconcilable, this article argues that these concepts in fact intersect dynamically, developing plastic-formless approaches to form, both aesthetic and organic, between the two thinkers.

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24 Jan 2023 09:50
Last Modified:
25 Jan 2023 02:07