Acts of Time: Cohen and Benjamin on Mathematics and History

Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Abstract
This paper argues that the principle of continuity that underlies Benjamin’s understanding of what makes the reality of a thing thinkable, which in the Kantian context implies a process of “filling time” with an anticipatory structure oriented to the subject, is of a different order than that of infinitesimal calculus—and that a “discontinuity” constitutive of the continuity of experience and (merely) counterposed to the image of actuality as an infinite gradation of ultimately thetic acts cannot be the principle on which Benjamin bases the structure of becoming. Tracking the transformation of the process of “filling time” from its logical to its historical iteration, or from what Cohen called the “fundamental acts of time” in Logik der reinen Erkenntnis to Benjamin’s image of a language of language (qua language touching itself), the paper will suggest that for Benjamin, moving from 0 to 1 is anything but paradoxical, and instead relies on the possibility for a mathematical function to capture the nature of historical occurrence beyond paradoxes of language or phenomenality.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
NGAOT-3
Revision history
Archival date: 2017-07-28
View upload history
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Added to PP index
2017-07-28

Total views
106 ( #23,120 of 39,923 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
43 ( #11,873 of 39,923 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.