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AfternessFigures of Following in Modern Thought and Aesthetics$
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Gerhard Richter

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780231157704

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231157704.001.0001

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Afterness and the Image (II)

Afterness and the Image (II)

Image Withdrawal

(p.139) 7 Afterness and the Image (II)

Gerhard Richter

Columbia University Press

This chapter examines whether, given the uncanny “thereness” of the image today, one might nevertheless theorize a certain withdrawal of the image. Conceptualized both as a physical object and as an intellectual figure, one might say that the image is one that manifests itself after—that is, both according to and following—the fundamental divide between perception and cognition. This chapter considers what the specific afterness of an image thus conceived might entail by focusing on four singular and enigmatic articulations of the relation among image, essence, and truth-content, furnished by Walter Benjamin, Martin Heidegger, Maurice Blanchot, and Gilles Deleuze. It shows how the image in withdrawal claims our attention as the sign of a modernity that stages itself in terms of a perpetual leave-taking.

Keywords:   thereness, image, withdrawal, afterness, essence, truth-content, Walter Benjamin, Martin Heidegger, Maurice Blanchot, Gilles Deleuze

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