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Slavoj Žižek, in his recent major book Less Than Nothing: Hegel and the Shadow of Dialectical Materialism (2012), lays out in exquisite detail his unique, heterodox interpretation of Hegel’s philosophy, an interpretation he has been developing and deepening since the 1980s. This intervention critically assesses Žižek’s complex relations with both Schellingianism and Hegelianism as these bear upon questions pertaining to the largely forgotten legacy of German idealist Naturphilosophie and this legacy’s continuing relevance for contemporary debates around Hegel’s metaphysics (or lack thereof).

This chapter starts by presenting a symptomatic cartography of the criticisms Žižek’s last book on Hegel provoked that...

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