The Logic of the Rhizome in the Work of Hegel and Deleuze

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The aim of this paper is to provide an account of Deleuze and Guattari’s model of the rhizome, and to look at a possible Hegelian line of response to it. After outlining why Deleuze and Guattari feel the need to move away from an arborescent model of thought, such as underlies the structure of judgement, I look at Hegel’s description of plant life in the Philosophy of Nature, and show how this can be related to the dialectic of the finite and infinite in the Science of Logic. This leads to the question: as a Hegelian riposte to Deleuze, can we see rhizomatic thought simply as an example of the spurious infinite at play? I want to conclude by showing that Deleuze and Guattari are well aware of this interpretation, and show how Deleuze’s distinction between the decentred and the poly-centred, and his characterisation of multiplicity as an alternative to the many, allow him to avoid these implications.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHegel and Deleuze
Place of PublicationEvanston, Illinois
PublisherNorthwestern University Press
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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