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Inner Experience (SUNY Series Intersections: Philosophy and Critical Theory) Paperback – January 1, 1988

ISBN-13: 978-0887066351 ISBN-10: 0887066356 Edition: 1ST

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 244 pages
  • Publisher: SUNY Press; 1ST edition (1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0887066356
  • ISBN-13: 978-0887066351
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.2 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #293,004 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English, French (translation) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Georges Bataille (1897–1962), a medievalist librarian by training, founded the College of Sociology and the secret society Acéphale. He was equally famous for his contributions to French literature, art criticism, anthropology, philosophy, and theology. Bane of theologians, existentialists, and surrealists during his lifetime, he became an essential reference for the poststructuralist generation of French intellectuals, including Roland Barthes, Jean Baudrillard, Michel Foucault, and Jacques Derrida.
Stuart Kendall is a writer, editor, and translator working at the intersections of modern and contemporary art and design, critical theory, poetics, and theology. He is the author of the critical biography Georges Bataille and the editor and translator of four other books by Bataille, including Guilty, also published by SUNY Press. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

More About the Author

Georges Bataille was born in Billom, France, in 1897. He was a librarian by profession. Also a philosopher, novelist, and critic, he was founder of the College of Sociology. Bataille died in 1962.

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34 of 38 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 14, 2000
Format: Paperback
In this book Bataille shows how "project" -- the realm of work not just physical but also the incessant discourse running through one's interior mind -- is a prison, a prison based upon our inauthentic interaction with the world: one puts everything off until later, one lives in a "hazy illusion". But this viel can be broken, says Bataille, through the dynamic ground of non-knowledge, the point one reaches when the quest for the "summit", for God and Absolute knowledge, dissolves. This point is the height of drama and is ultimately the last act of folly (like when Sisyphus realizes his fate of rolling a rock up a mountain). One then experiences a fusion of anguish and ecstasy; one is moved by Inner Experience, something that, paradoxically, is not "inner" nor "experience", but rather is like a slap in the face, a slap simlilar to what a zen monk receives in meditation when he or she realizes who he or she IS: emptiness.
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17 of 25 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 3, 1997
Format: Paperback
Georges Bataille was a French writer and philosopher during the surrealist period. He founded many literary movements in the form of magazines and critical reviews within surrealist circles such as, "Acephale", with friend and contemporary artist, Andre Masson. Other contemporaries of Bataille's include, Salvador Dali, and Bataille's nemesis, self-professed 'leader' of the surrealist movement, Andre Breton.

The book, "Inner Experience", was compiled post-humously from notes Bataille kept with the intention of putting into book form. Nonetheless, "Inner Experience" is very comprehensive and essential to understanding Bataille's philosophies of base materialism, expenditure, the sacred and the need to transgress the limits of experience.

Recommended reading by Bataille: "Story of the Eye", "Documents", and "Visions of Excess" a collection of essays (edited by Allan Stoeckl). Also, to learn more about Bataille, look up "Against Architecture: The Writings of Georges Bataille", by Dennis Hollier
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Although it not often is discussed, I would argue that "Inner Experience" is, amongst many other things, the most devastating response to the early work of Martin Heidegger in the realm of Continental Philosophy. There are many thinkers who have either attempted to do away with Heidegger, dismiss him, or continue his work in an unorthodox manner, but none, other than Bataille, has both adequately grasped the core of his (early) thought and dealt a devastating blow to it.

Essentially, as I've understood him, Heidegger interprets Dasein (Being-there) as "Project". Dasein can only be understood in the context of the meaningful activity that it involves itself with/finds itself absorbed in ="Project", as in a project that one/an individual "works on". Bataille, through a sustained exploration of "Project", shows how "Project" itself can be understood to be a kind of negation of the intensity of being. As I've read Bataille, the crucial thing is to find a way to approach intolerability. To "be" (for Bataille) means to "be intense", and to "be intense" means to "approach intolerabiliy". Instead of looking for an "Equipmental Totality" (Heidegger) to plug intolerable experiences into, we instead let them overpower us.

I'd also like to emphasize that engagement with Heidegger is just a small part of Bataille's thought, and that there is nowhere better to become acquainted with Bataille than "Inner Experience".
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer F Armstrong on November 29, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read Bataille's book called Inner Experience wherein he speaks of "the hatred of salvation" as as state of not wanting to be everything. "NO LONGER TO WANT TO BE EVERYTHING. this is the hatred for salvation".

So, it seems to me that he is saying that to accept one's insufficiency without trying to change it, without working to improve oneself, or to raise oneself, and so on, is the hatred of salvation. As such, he is implying that salvation is something that we are all inclined to seek, in a sense which is not really differentiated from the religious sense of salvation.

Bataille saw it as positive to become satiated and thereby gain the means from the idea of salvation to save oneself, since investing in transcendence alone robs us of our sovereignty as individuals: he preferred the formula: "The fall from grace is everlasting". This is the position of those who do not have contempt for the reality of the here and now, but one has to attempt the summit in order to appreciate the satiety of the decline.
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