Professor Andrew Gibson

Personal profile

Andrew Gibson is Research Professor of Modern Literature and Theory. He was recently elected to the Comité de Séléction of the Collège International de Philosophie in Paris, and reappointed to its Conseil Scientifique for a further three years. The Collège was founded in 1983, by Jacques Derrida among others, and has been much associated with names that include Jean-François Lyotard and Philippe Lacoue-Labarthe. Current directors include Giorgio Agamben, Alain Badiou and Barbara Cassin. In 2008 Gibson was Carole and Gordon Segal Professor of Irish Literature at Northwestern University in Evanston, Chicago where, among others, Richard Ellmann taught from 1951 to 1968, establishing a tradition in the study of Irish literature. He has served as a Research Projects Assessor for the Academy of Finland. From 2003 to 2005, he was a Leverhulme Research Fellow.

Gibson is a permanent advisory editor to the James Joyce Quarterly and a former Trustee of the International James Joyce Foundation. He was recently appointed Associate Member of the Beckett International Foundation at the University of Reading. He has served as a member of the editorial board of the Anglo-French journal in Beckett scholarship set up at the Université de Paris VII to build bridges between French and Anglophone Beckett Studies, Limit(e) Beckett. He is also a member of the editorial board of Textuel (Université de Paris VII), Symbolism: An International Annual of Critical Aesthetics, Critical Zone and Miscelánea (University of Zaragoza).

Prof. Gibson is Founder/Organizer of the London University Seminar for Research into Joyce's Ulysses, and co-Founder/co-Organizer of the London University Finnegans Wake Research Seminar. He is also a member of the Advisory Board for Londonicity, the first annual London Studies conference; and of the Advisory Board of the British Network for Modern Textual Studies. He has been the recipient of three British Academy Small Research Grants.

In June 2001 and 2002, he was Visiting Professor at the Scandinavian Summer School of Literature and Theory. From July to October 2002, he was Visiting Professor at the University of Tokyo, Japan's premier university. In March 2003, he was Visiting Scholar at Texas (A&M) University. In 2001-3, he served as Visiting Professor at the Nordic Universities Summer School.

Children's Fiction

Andrew Gibson has also written five novels and a collection of stories for children, published by Faber. By invitation, he gives creative workshops and talks on writing for children at schools. Please contact Faber and Faber, 3 Queen Square, London WC1; or Gibson's agents: Peters, Fraser and Dunlop, The Chambers, Chelsea Harbour, London, SW10 0XF.

Research interests

Modern Literature and Theory

Andrew Gibson’s field is Modern Literature and Theory, that is, European Literature and Theory 1789-present, with a look back as far as Hume’s Treatise of Human Nature (1739-40). The larger bulk of his research has been on twentieth-century literature, often in philosophical and/or theoretical and/or historical and/or narratological contexts, and twentieth-century philosophy, though he now also writes increasingly on the nineteenth century. His major work has been on James Joyce and Samuel Beckett, but the range of his interests and his writings is much wider than that, including, for instance, Kant, Wordsworth, Schopenhauer, Tennyson, Rimbaud, Mallarmé, Pound, Stevens, Woolf, Lowry, Henry Green, Hemingway, Rhys, Robbe-Grillet, Morrison, Sebald and Coetzee. Students wishing to work with him on modern writers, not least from new theoretical and historical perspectives, are encouraged to get in touch.

James Joyce

Professor Gibson is the author of the widely praised Joyce's Revenge: History, Politics and Aesthetics in 'Ulysses', published by Oxford University Press on 16 June, 2002. This major, book-length account of Joyce's Ulysses took fifteen years to write. It is a complex and evolving treatment of what were — for Joyce — the most crucial issues in Irish history and contemporary Irish politics. The study is original in arguing that, in many of their most important aspects, the aesthetic practices that make up Ulysses are responses to the colonial history and condition of Ireland, the colonial politics of Irish culture and British-Irish cultural politics, particularly in the years 1880-1920. The book pays particular attention to Joyce's treatment of a wide variety of historically specific English and Anglo-Irish discourses in his greatest novel, arguing that Ulysses is fuelled by a Parnellite hostility to the colonizer's culture yet, at the same time, both transforms and transcends the available range of nationalist responses to that culture.

Gibson has also published a short biography of Joyce, Joyce: A Critical Life (Reaktion Books, 2006); and, with Len Platt, Joyce, Ireland and Britain, a collection of essays for the Florida Joyce Series, published by Florida University Press (2006). This collection of essays provides a theoretical account of a specifically Joycean historical materialism (sometimes known as ‘the London method’) in Joyce studies, situating it in relation to postcolonial and other forms of historical work on Joyce. The essays contained in the volume partly exemplify this method. The collection is the first substantially to address Joyce's work in the context of British and Irish history and politics together. Contributors include Richard Brown, Vincent Cheng and Anne Fogarty.

Gibson most recent monograph on Joyce, a study of Joyce’s early writings, The Strong Spirit: History, Politics and Aesthetics in the Writings of James Joyce 1898-1915, was published in February, 2013.  It proceeds according to the same historicizing methodology that he adopted in Joyce’s Revenge, examining Joyce’s writings 1898-1903, Dubliners, Stephen Hero, the 'Triestine Writings’, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Exiles in turn, and in the context of successive developments in British-Irish history and politics during the period. The intention, again, is to introduce a fresh mode of historicizing thought into Joyce studies. Gibson is also steadily accumulating materials for historical studies of Finnegans Wake, but these are still some years in the future.

Gibson was co-founder of and continues to run the London University (Charles Peake) Seminar for Research into Joyce's Ulysses, and, with Finn Fordham and Wim van Mierlo, is co-founder and co-organizer of the London University Finnegans Wake Research Seminar. These seminars now form part of the seminar programme of the Institute of English Studies in the University of London. In the past, the Ulysses seminar has organized conferences and produced volumes of essays. Anyone interested in joining either seminar should email Professor Gibson.

There are many different aspects of Joyce's work that need to be explored from the kind of historical vantage point that Gibson adopts in his research. Students interested in doing this kind of work at PhD or post-doctoral level are most warmly invited to contact him.

Samuel Beckett

Andrew Gibson has also worked for many years and published extensively on Samuel Beckett. In particular, he spent some years thinking about the relationship between Beckett’s work and that of contemporary philosopher Alain Badiou. He was awarded a two-year Leverhulme Research Fellowship specifically to write a book on this relationship. The book was published in 2006, by Oxford University Press, with the title Beckett and Badiou: The Pathos of Intermittency. Badiou has been an admirer of Beckett's work for more than forty years, and has written about him at some length. His thought about Beckett is precisely constructed in opposition to the traditions (of nihilist absurdism and existential humanism) that dominated Beckett criticism until the late 80s. Yet, at the same time, whilst having much in common with them, Badiou moves in a strikingly and significantly different direction to the post-theoretical and postmodern accounts of Beckett that emerged in the 90s.

Gibson's book argues that Badiou's reading does indeed make possible an important new departure in Beckett studies, but only if it is itself modified and to some extent transformed in the light of Beckett's work. For in certain respects, Beckett continues to raise certain questions, not only for Badiou's aesthetics, but for his philosophy as a whole. Gibson's book is an innovative comparative study that not only provides a fresh interpretation of Beckett but is also concerned with a specific set of problems within contemporary philosophy and aesthetics. He also wrote the Afterword - 'Badiou, Beckett and Contemporary Criticism' - to Badiou on Beckett, the English translation of Badiou's complete writings on Beckett (Clinamen, 2003). Students interested in working on Beckett, particularly from a contemporary (particularly a contemporary French) philosophical perspective, are encouraged to contact him.

Gibson is now increasingly concerned with merging his philosophical work on Beckett with historical approaches. He wrote the Afterword to the Cambridge University Press volume on Beckett and Ireland edited by Sean Kennedy ― `“The skull the skull the skull the skull in Connemara”: Beckett, Ireland and Elsewhere’ ― and has also written a short biography of Beckett, Samuel Beckett: A Critical Life, published by Reaktion Books. Both appeared in 2010, and both seek to ground certain aspects of the argument in Beckett and Badiou in historical and empirical factuality, Irish, but also French, further placing Gibson’s reading of Beckett’s life and work in relation to the various socio-historical worlds that the author successively inhabited. Gibson now everywhere stresses the need to connect the established tradition of philosophical work on Beckett with the more recent, experimental and ground-breaking turn to historical research. By the same token, whilst he is particularly interested in ways of building bridges between the French and Anglophone traditions in Beckett criticism, he has an important stake in maintaining the perhaps supreme importance of the French Beckett, and his Beckett research now and for the foreseeable future will chiefly be on the French Beckett 1940-52. See for example his 'Beckett, de Gaulle and the Fourth Republic 1944-49: L'Innommable and En attendant Godot’, Limit(e) Beckett 1 (2010), pp. 1-26, at www.limitebeckett.paris-sorbonne.fr/one/gibson.html. His own position is that the philosophical and historical approaches to Beckett most notably engage with and complement each other through a certain application of Badiou’s thought; but also that, at the current point in time, it is the historical work that most urgently needs to be done.
Again, prospective research students interested in pursuing this line of enquiry with Professor Gibson should make contact.

Contemporary French Philosophy

Professor Gibson has forty years’ experience of reading and working with continental European philosophy and literary and critical theory, particularly modern French philosophy and theory. In the nineties, much of Professor Gibson's work involved the use of this material. This was particularly the case with his work on postmodernism. As what was once the radical challenge of postmodernism subsided into an often rather vapid, lightweight and conservative orthodoxy, so Gibson's theoretical interests specifically focussed on new (post-Deleuzean) developments in French thought and became philosophically more demanding, less concerned with 'applications’ of theory. Apart from Alain Badiou, he is also extremely well versed in the work of the contemporary French philosophers Jacques Rancière, Françoise Proust, Christian Jambet and Guy Lardreau, and has an interest in the work of Clément Rosset and recent French ventures into nihilism and speculative realism. He also has major expertise in a more familiar tradition spanning a period from Kojève to Derrida.

Intermittency: The Concept of Historical Reason in Recent French Philosophy will be published by Edinburgh University Press in 2011. It attempts to articulate and explain a post-Hegelian or, more accurately, post-Kojèvian French philosophical concept of the 'reason in history’ as rare, sporadic and irregular. Gibson’s case is that the philosophers in question produce a counter-phenomenology of spirit and a 'melancholic-ecstatic' conception of historical time. As such, however, they call to their necessary complement which, Gibson argues, is, above all, literature. The book includes chapters on Badiou, Rancière, Proust, Jambet and Lardreau, though it also abundantly contextualizes them both with reference to a specific conception of modernity beginning with the French Revolution, Kant’s late writings and Wordsworth’s Prelude, and a range of significant modern thinkers, from Hume to Benjamin, Lacan and Sartre. It also includes extended discussions of major literary figures, notably Wordsworth, Kleist, Flaubert, Rimbaud, Orwell, Carlo Levi and Sebald (and a film-maker, Rossellini). Any students interested in working at PhD level on the appropriate philosophers and philosophical themes, or the aesthetics in contemporary French philosophy, or the relationship between it and English literature, are warmly invited to contact Prof. Gibson.

Contemporary London and Its Literature

With the architectural historian Joe Kerr, in 2003, Andrew Gibson published London from Punk to Blair (Reaktion Books). This substantial collection of new essays and photographs taken over the last quarter of the twentieth century reappeared in a revised second edition in 2012. and is an important work of contemporary social and cultural history. It was partly funded by a British Academy grant awarded to Professor Gibson. Gibson contributed an essay entitled ‘Altering Images', on London literature 1980-2003; and, with his former research student Jennifer Bavidge, an essay entitled 'The Metropolitan Playground: London's Children' (also published in abridged form in the Times Higher Educational Supplement, 4 December, 2003). Together with the Royal College of Art, the Museum of London and Reaktion Books, on behalf of the department, he also organized a major conference on contemporary London at the Museum of London (November 2003), to mark the launch of the book. He is a member of the Advisory Board of Londonicity, London’s first annual London Studies conference series. His own research interest in the field is ongoing and students who share it are encouraged to contact him.

Review Extracts Since 2000 (A Selection)

Joyce’s Revenge

`I had been wondering if history and politics in Ulysses were such well-mined veins that only materials for articles and monographs remained. Happily, Andrew Gibson’s superb study dispelled my doubts.’ James Fairhall, James Joyce Quarterly

`It is hard to pay sufficient tribute to Gibson’s keenly detailed research and grasp of nuance in his discussion of the web of relations conjoining the powerful and the powerless’.  James Fairhall, James Joyce Quarterly

`Joyce’s Revenge’ deserves to become one of the landmarks in criticism devoted to Ulysses. Several chapters alone are worth the price of the book. For example, Gibson’s research on Gibraltar, fascinating in itself, deepens and enriches our understanding of Molly in a way that is unlikely to become outmoded’. James Fairhall, James Joyce Quarterly

`Joyce’s Revenge stands as a pinnacle of Joyce studies, a culmination and climax of the historicist turn that the field had taken in the previous decade’. Ronan McDonald, Textual Practice

'Joyce's Revenge splendidly serves to show us how significant is a scrutiny of the intertwined history of Britain and Ireland for understanding the radical aesthetics of Ulysses. This is a book that will keep Joyce scholars busy, and rightly so, for some time to come.' Irish Studies Review

'Aside from Joyce scholars those working more generally in Irish Studies should also read the book, as it indicates how closely Ulysses is an intervention into the crucial debates around history, culture, and national identity that shaped Ireland from the end of the nineteenth century.' Irish Studies Review

`Almost every page shows evidence of the most scrupulous research into the text, and is almost always persuasive in its arguments. Joyce's Revenge is a genuinely innovative and fascinating account of Ulysses; undoubtedly it will change the contours of Joyce criticism with its profoundly historicised discussion of Joyce's relation to Britain and Ireland.' Irish Studies Review

'Gibson's nuanced historicist semi-colonial reading is particularly effective in the interpretation of the most challenging parts of the novel, especially the last three episodes.' Clare Hutton, Times Literary Supplement

'This thought-provoking study makes a significant and highly original contribution to scholarship on Ulysses ... a particular strength of this book is the way in which it seeks to interpret the aesthetic of Ulysses as a whole, rather than focusing on a few key features or episodes.' Clare Hutton, Times Literary Supplement

'Andrew Gibson mentions that it took him fifteen years to write Joyce's Revenge. It's remarkable that he was able to produce this challenging, original study with its dense and learned historical detail that quickly. The book was worth waiting for.' Jean-Paul Riquelme, James Joyce Broadsheet

'Joyce's Revenge makes a significant and distinctive contribution to Joyce studies, and it deserves a wide readership. The author is impressively well read in English and Irish cultural history, and the book identifies and explores an aspect of this history about which most Joyceans, perhaps, know less than they might. Among the books on Joyce I've studied recently this is perhaps the most absorbing read, cover to cover, of all of them.' Timothy Martin, James Joyce Literary Supplement

`Gibson's detailed reading of Ulysses against the background of its intertextual archive provides highly revealing and often surprising insights into Joyce's deconstructive representation of the ideological forces at work both in England and Ireland. Joyce's Revenge combines a masterly analytical approach with a supreme grasp of theory, intellectual rigour and a convincing power of persuasion. Among the many books on our shelves produced by the Joyce industry, Gibson's will figure among the first things to read on Ulysses.' Wolfgang Wicht, Anglia

'The true distinction of Joyce's Revenge lies in its density. This comes in two forms: intellectual and historical. Every page in this book feels hard-won; every argument is sophisticated enough to include a host of variations, or a sequence of counter-arguments. There is almost a hint of Hegel or Adorno in Gibson's thought, the unremitting intensity with which a position is carried through in all its exemplification, then inverted with equal rigour.' Joseph Brooker, Textual Practice

'Joyce's Revenge deserves more than a review: better a colloquium dedicated to following its myriad trails. For all the headlong pursuit of its argument, its chapters are also diversions in themselves, localized and surprising.' Joseph Brooker, Textual Practice

'Political Joyce' is not new. Its task must now be to age wisely: to root its claims not in theoretical fashion but in deep historical soil. No one has yet undertaken this task with more care and skill than Andrew Gibson.' Joseph Brooker, Textual Practice

'Andrew Gibson combines a wealth of knowledge and research ... with an admirable sensitivity to the Joycean text. The book has much to do with what postcolonial theory calls 'hybridity' and 'mimicry', but is also densely and precisely historicized ... Joyce's Revenge immerses itself in a broad range of specific cultural discourses on subjects from nationalist politics to medical debates to the politics of street names, the politics of Shakespeare and bardolatry, Protestant-Catholic relations, Jewishness, Irish historiography, women's journals, and astronomy. The result is an important new study that will alter the ways we read Ulysses.' Professor Vincent J. Cheng, University of Utah

'Andrew Gibson's is easily one of the most serious of academic books to have appeared on Joyce in recent years. It is densely researched, full of ideas, and well-embedded in current academic questions, and is sure to become a familiar point of reference in future debates as well as a standard to which subsequent researchers will have to aspire.' Richard Brown, Modernism/Modernity

`Andrew Gibson has written a book to be mined for decades to come for its unique historical insight, its extraordinary attention to detail and its powerful theoretical grasp. Joyce's Revenge is the kind of rare book one compulsively recommends to students and friends'. Marian Eide, South Central Review

`Andrew Gibson's book presents a convincing and fruitful method to interpret Ulysses. It also ― unlike many students of Joyce ― takes Joyce seriously as both a thinker and an artist ... The worth of any theory is not in its cleverness but in its explanatory value. On this basis Gibson's book is a success and a most refreshing one.' The Compulsive Reader


Review Extracts: James Joyce: A Critical Life

`The strength of Gibson’s scholarship lies in his confident grasp of the social, intellectual and religious details of Anglo-Irish history, science and material culture out of which Joyce’s work sprung…His books on Joyce prove the mischievous contention of George Bernard Shaw that Ireland is one of the last spots on earth still generating the ideal Englishman of history…It may be that his own rereading of Joyce’s masterpieces is a chapter of the moral history of England and its liberation too.’ Declan Kiberd, Professor of Anglo-Irish Literature, University College Dublin

`[In Joyce’s Revenge], with critical acumen and subtle scholarship, Gibson mapped out a radically new approach to Joyce and Ulysses…here the concentration is on the work in the context of the life…This is an important study that should send us all back to the master’s scriptures with wiped eyes and big questions’. Gerry Dukes, Irish Independent

`The care with which Gibson analyses the play Exiles in his study is essential reading, as is his change in perspective regarding Ulysses itself, where he emphasizes the novel’s profoundly Irish historical and existential freight’.  El Pais

`Gibson’s focus on Joyce’s Irishness produces original and provocative readings not only of Joyce’s works, but also of key moments in his life and even of his work habits….James Joyce makes for engrossing and satisfying reading. Gibson’s knowledge of Irish history, like his prose, is impeccable’.  James Joyce Literary Supplement

`There is an elegance to the whole package, and especially to Gibson’s writing…his skill at conveying quantities of information without losing momentum, and his fingertip familiarity with Irish history’.  English Literature in Transition 1880-1920


Review Extracts: Joyce, Ireland, Britain

`Deeply researched and meticulously written, these essays offer important insights into the historical context of Joyce’s work and adjust, significantly, our sense of Joyce’s relation to relation to Irish politics as well as to England and English culture’. Timothy Martin, Rutgers University

`Joyce, Ireland, Britain is likely to be considered one of the most important essay collections ever produced on Joyce, and will be talked about and used for decades to come’. Sebastian Knowles, Ohio State University

`The essay in this volume employ the “London method”.... The London school appears to have learned the lessons of Michel Foucault, for while it “aims at exactitude”, it is also `attentive to the possibility of historical discontinuities, ruptures, breaks. What we find [in Joyce, Ireland, Britain] is contextual narrative and reflection on historical events and figures, much of it insightful and original, supported by a wide range of published material...these essays, and the editors’ theoretical reflections, advance historical  Joyce criticism in the direction
of greater specificity and nuance. They also raise anew the question of the status of historical analysis in literary studies’. Gregory Castle, James Joyce Quarterly

`The introduction demonstrates the importance of persistent critique and an equal belief in the perfectibility of scholarship’s enterprise. The essays that follow are of uniformly high quality, written by scholars of great talent and conviction; their insights will be of real interest to researchers and teachers of Joyce’s work’. Marian Eide, James Joyce Literary Supplement

`This informative, even distinguished collection of essays promises to immerse its reader into a newly specific, historically accurate context for reading Joyce's work in relation to British and Irish politics and culture. Perhaps its most arresting claim is that unlike the Englishman Haines in Joyce's Ulysses, the English critics represented here refuse to treat history as a scapegoat in an effort to evade personal or national responsibility for historical wrongs against Ireland. Instead, the editors argue that the responsibility of "a new kind of English Joyce scholar" might be "to hold back from too ready a surrender to historical amnesia" and "to gesture toward the immense debtorship" [of a thing done; an echo of Stephen's telegram to Mulligan in Ulysses] "by doing a great deal of extremely hard and painstaking historical work"’. These two goals are something that every contributor succeeds in’. Vicki Mahaffey, Modernism/Modernity)

`Gibson and Platt's Joyce, Ireland, Britain and Shelton's Joyce and the Narrative Structure of Incest... acknowledge a crisis of method; both are impressively grounded in textual commentary and explication, whilst being overtly aware of the theoretical and methodological contracts into which they enter ― aware, that is, of the fact that their respective arguments emerge in response to a clear demand for methodological innovation. It is this awareness that lends the readings they advance a special quality and urgency’. Journal of Modern Literature


Review Extracts: Beckett and Badiou

`Beckett and Badiou is all the better for its inherent difficulties, and even uncertainties, for its ultimate twisting and turning in on itself. What it lacks at times in elegance ― and the book feels in parts, unlike most of Gibson’s other criticism, almost self-denying in its stylistic dryness ― it makes up for with a nuance and rigour that make it a richly satisfying and productive account on Beckett’s oeuvre’. David Cunningham, Radical Philosophy

`Gibson probably takes us further than any other recent reader of Beckett…is direction of grasping the full social and critical form of his art’.  David Cunningham, Radical Philosophy

`Gibson’s book, with its intricate layers of theoretical complexity and its vast ambition, is certainly a formidable feat of scholarship…. The book is a testimony to its author’s intense participation in a set of intellectual debates and exchanges which are ― or at least should be ― of the greatest significance in literary studies’. English

`Gibson is masterful in his grasp of Badiou’s system (even its more knotty mathematical formulae, and he effortlessly weaves his argument from Badiou’s theorems to Beckett’s literary texts....By suggesting that Beckett’s work describes a waiting for something (the event) as well as an aimless, anxious, endlessly postponed process (of intermittency), Gibson provides an absorbing account of the hesitant expectancy of Beckett’s writing’.  Benjamin Keatinge, Irish University Review

'The book is impeccably researched.....Badiou's reading of the author has hitherto been less influential in the Anglo-Saxon (empirical) context than it has in le monde francophone. Gibson's book constitutes the first sustained study of the subject. In its depth of analysis, it will be difficult to surpass.'  Ulrika Maude, Modernism/Modernity

'Scrupulous, immensely well-read'. Leslie Hill, French Studies

`Gibson’s book is much more than a programmatic “Beckett and...” exercise that shoehorns Beckett into some pre-designed philosophical system. It is a far more sophisticated and dynamic critique than that. It is a tremendously alert and penetrating exercise in intellectual synergy, highlighting unexpected connections between the philosopher and artist that helps us consider both in a new light’. Textual Practice

`That Gibson can so comfortably move between historicist and abstract approaches reveals him as one of the most ambidextrous modernist specialists in an area that is still quite often split between scholars and theorists’. Textual Practice


Review Extracts: Samuel Beckett: A Critical Life

'In his recent short biography of the writer, Samuel Beckett, Andrew Gibson makes the essential attempt to restore to the dramatist and his characters the difficult and thankless nobility of the compassionate view . . .  An excellent and necessary volume’. George Hunka, Artistic Director, Theatre Minima, New York

'[The book] undoubtedly sheds light on the historical circumstances that informed [Beckett's] texts, and there are many interesting details that allow us to see his literary achievement more clearly’. Times Literary Supplement

'This new biography . . . considers the writer's work in relation to the historical circumstances of his life and provides an original insight into one of Ireland's greatest writers.' Irish Post


On Intermittency: The Concept of Historical Reason in Recent French Philosophy

`This book is to my knowledge the most subtle and original study of a crucial orientation in French philosophy that took place after the heyday of the best-known, now dead, great masters (Althusser, Derrida, Foucault, Lacan etc.), but which refused to ally itself with the nouvelle philosophie (Lévy, Finkielkraut and their followers). Gibson clarifies what the principal representatives of this orientation have in common, what separates them, and why thought must set out from them today, even if it preserves ― as Gibson does ― a real critical distance from them. The book is without equal or rival anywhere, including France’. Alain Badiou

`Gibson is not merely a skilful interpreter of texts, not merely a passeur, who enables us to discover new vistas in contemporary French philosophy, but also a philosopher in his own right...the book you are going to read is not merely a book, it is a landmark’. Jean-Jacques Lecercle, Preface

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