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Essays on Deleuze

Daniel W. Smith

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Gathers 20 of Smith’s new and classic essays into one volume for the first time

Combining his most important pieces over the last 15 years along with two completely new essays, ‘On the Becoming of Concepts’ and ‘The Idea of the Open’, this volume is Smith’s definitive treatise on Deleuze. The four sections cover Deleuze’s use of the history of philosophy, his philosophical system, several Deleuzian concepts and his position within contemporary philosophy.

Smith’s essays are frequent references for students and scholars working on Deleuze. Several of the articles have already become touchstones in the field, notably those on Alain Badiou and Jacques Derrida. For anyone interested in Deleuze’s philosophy, this book is not to be missed.

Key features

  • The first book written by Daniel W. Smith, one of the world's leading commentators on Deleuze
  • Focuses exclusively on the philosophical themes of Deleuze's work, setting it apart from other works on Deleuze and making it an essential collection for philosophers working on Deleuze


I. Deleuze and the History of Philosophy
1. Plato
The Concept of the Simulacrum: Deleuze and the Overturning of Platonism
2. Univocity
The Doctrine of Univocity: Deleuze’s Ontology of Immanence
3. Leibniz
Deleuze on Leibniz: Difference, Continuity, and the Calculus
4. Hegel
Deleuze, Hegel, and the Post-Kantian Tradition
5. Pre- and Post-Kantianism
Logic and Existence: Deleuze on the Conditions of the Real
II. Deleuze’s Philosophical System
6. Aesthetics
Deleuze’s Theory of Sensation: Overcoming the Kantian Duality
7. Dialectics
Deleuze, Kant, and the Theory of Immanent Ideas
8. Analytics
Concepts, Time, and Truth
9. Ethics
The Place of Ethics in Deleuze’s Philosophy: Three Questions of Immanence
10. Politics
Flow, Code, and Stock: A Note on Deleuze’s Political Philosophy
III. Five Deleuzian Concepts
11. Desire
Deleuze and the Question of Desire: Toward an Immanent Theory of Ethics
12. Life
“A Life of Pure Immanence”: Deleuze’s “Critique et clinique” Project
13. Sensation
Deleuze on Bacon: Three Conceptual Trajectories in “The Logic of Sensation”
14. The New
The Conditions of the New
15. The Open
The Idea of the Open: Bergson’s Three Theses on Movement
IV. Deleuze and Contemporary Philosophy
16. Jacques Derrida, Deleuze and Derrida, Immanence and Transcendence: Two Directions in Recent French Thought
17. Alain Badiou, Mathematics and the Theory of Multiplicities: Deleuze and Badiou Revisited
18. Jacques Lacan, The Inverse Side of the Structure: Žižek on Deleuze on Lacan
19. Pierre Klossowski, Klossowski’s Reading of Nietzsche: Impulses, Phantasms, Simulacra, Stereotypes
20. Paul Patton, Deleuze and the Liberal Tradition: Normativity, Freedom, and Judgment

About the Author

Daniel W. Smith is Professor of Philosophy at Purdue University and one of the world's leading commentators on Deleuze. He has translated his work, edited collections and written numerous articles on Deleuze.


For the last fifteen years, all of us have read one or two of Daniel Smith’s remarkable essays on Deleuze. But now, we have all of them. Finally and thankfully, we have Essays on Deleuze, a book that will become immediately essential reading for anyone interested in twentieth-century continental philosophy.

- Leonard Lawlor, Sparks Professor of Philosophy, Penn State University

For many years now Daniel Smith’s work has led us through Deleuze’s philosophy with an unmatched clarity. It is thanks to him that the many historical connections of that philosophy have been grasped in their full rigour and depth. No researcher on Deleuze’s philosophy can pass this work by. No reader can fail to benefit from an engagement with Smith’s groundbreaking interpretation.

- James Williams, Professor of European Philosophy, University of Dundee

Daniel W. Smith’s work on the great French philosopher Gilles Deleuze (1925–95) is owed a debt by English-speaking readers of Deleuze that is difficult to overstate ... 'Essays on Deleuze' finally gathers this work together in a single volume, presenting these essays along a more unified trajectory that both records Smith’s significant contribution to Deleuze studies while also laying foundations for new avenues of research ... Throughout these essays Smith exhibits an uncanny knack for rendering intuitive some of the most obscure and vexing concepts and theses in Deleuze, to a point where the reader, upon receiving the instruction, is left wondering how the former confusion could have arisen ... 'Essays on Deleuze' clearly marks an important landmark in the study of Deleuze’s philosophy, culminating a 15-year period of Smith's unique and highly influential readings of Deleuze.

- Kenneth Noe, Southern Illinois University, Journal of French and Francophone Philosophy