Adoration of the Fait Accompli

In my quest to finish reading everything Castoriadis has published in English, I’ve started his book Philosophy, Politics, Autonomy, translated by the omnipresent David Ames Curtis, which also happens to be a pseudonym used by the ‘anonymous’ translator of some of Castoriadis’ final works, available here. In a section in the first essay (“Intellectuals and history”) titled “The adoration of the fait accompli,” I found this gem of a quote.

Let us be done with this ecclesiastical, academic, and literary ‘respectuosity.’ Let us finally speak of syphilis in this family, of which half the members are clearly suffering in general paralysis. We should take by the ear the theologian, the Hegelian, the Nietzschean, the Heideggerian, bring the to Kolyma in Siberia, to Auschwitz, into a Russian psychiatric hospital, into the torture chambers of the Argentine police, and require that they explain, on the spot and without subterfuges, the meaning of the expressions ‘There is no power but of God,’ ‘All that is real is rational,’ ‘the innocence of becoming,’ or ‘releasement toward things. (9-10)

I have said little about Castoriadis thus far on this page, and promise to start writing more on him soon.


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