Alexander R. Galloway – Laruelle: Against The Digital


Univ Of Minnesota Press, ISBN: 9780816692132, English, 304 pages, 2014, USA

“Radical” would be the most appropriate category for the French philosopher François Laruelle’s work, centred on his concept of “Non-Philosophy.” Here Galloway extensively engages in Laruelle’s work, elucidating it but also bringing it into collision with the concept of “digitality.” Questioning the digital in its own nature is an issue that is often underestimated, especially as in post-digital and particularly in post-internet art movements it is taken as an unavoidable fulcrum. Galloway addresses digitality and asks his readers to consider a “withdrawal from digitality parallel how Non-Philosophy withdraws from philosophy. He asks, “is it possible to think non-digitality?” and his answer is definitely “Yes.” Galloway defines Laruelle as “perhaps the only non-digital thinker we have”, drawing on a famous quote of him saying that “Hegel is dead, but he lives on inside the electric calculator.” Indeed, one of the most powerful hidden radical changes of the digital is the “discrete,” or the construction of universal information in a “sampled” instead of a “continuous” way (as it was with the analogue). Galloway’s proposal is an abstention from the attempt of digitality to “encode and simulate anything whatsoever in the universe.” This philosophical book is a major contribution to the current debate, often stuck on the qualities and the impact of the “digital,” with an accurate, radical and out of the ordinary approach.


Galloway: 10 Theses On The Digital