Alain Badiou (Author) Justin Clemens (Translator)
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'All philosophy is a metaphysics of happiness...or it's not worth an hour of trouble' claims Alain Badiou in this lively intervention into one of the most persistent themes in philosophy: what is happiness? And what do I need to do to be happy? The desire to be happy is one of our most universal goals and yet there doesn't seem to be any easy answers or formulas for achieving happiness. And the concept has become so commodified and corrupted to be almost unrecognizable as something worth pursuing. In light of this, should we just give up the aspiration to be happy altogether? Alain Badiou thinks not.

While eschewing futile procedures for magically becoming 'happy', Badiou does passionately maintain that in order to be truly happy we need philosophy. And, bolder still, that a life lived philosophically is the happiest life of all!

Product Details

Bloomsbury Academic
Publish Date
February 21, 2019
5.0 X 7.6 X 0.5 inches | 0.0 pounds
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About the Author

Alain Badiou taught at the École Normale Supérieure and at the Collège International de Philosophie in Paris, France. His most recent book The Immanence of Truths: Being and Event III is coming out in 2020 with Bloomsbury.


"[The] book has a genuine intimacy to it ... [The] text displays his urgency to say more, to be clear, to keep going, to re-invent, and to express the "true life" through a generalised fidelity to his still ongoing project." - Marx & Philosophy Review of Books

"In this lucid and provocative essay, one of our greatest living thinkers inquires after the meaning of happiness. Badiou argues that projects of emancipation and liberation are the surest means to an active, non-complacent contentment, although 'Happiness' is as much a spirited defense of classical philosophy as it is a call to action. We need Alain Badiou more than ever." --Tom Eyers, Associate Professor, Duquesne University, USA

"What defines true happiness has been a fundamental question of philosophy since at least Plato's Republic and Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics. Alain Badiou in this little book steals it back from the self-help industry and restores it to its metaphysical grandeur." --Bruno Bosteels, Professor of Comparative Literature and Society and Latin American and Iberian Cultures, Columbia University, USA