Spinoza: The Velocities of Thought: Lecture 8, 03 February 1981

Listed in Datasets publication by group The Deleuze Seminars

By Gilles Deleuze

Lecture given by French philosopher Gilles Deleuze at the University of Paris 8, 03 February 1981. This is lecture 8 of a 14-lecture seminar Deleuze taught between December 1980 and March 1981.

Version 1.0 - published on 29 Nov 2017 doi:10.4231/R7H70D0P - cite this Archived on 30 Dec 2017

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The Deleuze Seminars is a collection of audio recordings, transcriptions, and English translations of, and supplemental materials from, the lectures French philosopher Gilles Deleuze gave during his career at the University of Paris 8.

“Spinoza: The Velocities of Thought” was a 14-lecture seminar given from December 1980 to March 1981. In this seminar, Deleuze revisits his examination of Baruch Spinoza’s philosophy. Deleuze had previously published two books on Spinoza: Expressionism in Philosophy: Spinoza (Spinoza et le problème de l'expression, 1968), and Spinoza: Practical Philosophy (Spinoza Philosophie pratique, 1970, 2nd ed. 1981). The majority of these lectures were given the same year as the publication of the second edition of the latter title.

In the 03 February 1981 lecture, topics of discussion include: the world of signs and equivocity; univocity and expression; perceptions; power and the world of affects; Epicurus; joy and sadness; Descartes and the cogito; the body and the increase of power; the apparatuses of sadness and power; hope; the Russian writer Anton Chekhov; the Polish-British writer Joseph Conrad; active affects and the expression of power; Ethics, Book II; abstract ideas and general ideas; the three kinds of knowledge (signs, reason and the knowledge of essences); the analysis of eternity; and the composition of relationships.

This dataset includes: three mp3 recordings of the lecture (total time, 2:01:53), an aggregate version of the audio recordings into a single mp3, and the complete French transcription of the recorded lecture in both pdf (27 pp) and plain text.

Note: The first (approximately) 30 seconds of the part 1 audio file as available on the Paris 8 website has been deleted in the version available here, as it contained mostly ambient sound. The timestamps for Section 1 of the transcription have been adjusted accordingly, and should be read as approximations.


Les Séminaires de Deleuze sont une collection d'enregistrements audio, de transcriptions et de traductions en anglais et de documents complémentaires des conférences que le philosophe français Gilles Deleuze a donné lors de sa carrière à l'Université de Paris 8.

«Spinoza: des vitesses de la pensée» était un séminaire de 14 conférences donné de décembre 1980 à mars 1981. Dans ce séminaire, Deleuze revisite son examen de la philosophie de Baruch Spinoza. Deleuze avait précédemment publié deux ouvrages sur Spinoza: Spinoza et le problème de l'expression (1968) et Spinoza – Philosophie pratique (1970, 2e éd., 1981). La majorité de ces conférences ont eu lieu la même année que la publication de la deuxième édition de ce dernier titre.

Dans la conférence du 3 février 1981, les sujets de discussion incluent: le monde des signes et de l'équivocité; univocité et expression; perceptions; la puissance et le monde des affects; Epicure; joie et tristesse; Descartes et le cogito; le corps et l'augmentation de la puissance; les appareils de la tristesse et du pouvoir; l’espoir; l'écrivain russe Anton Tchekhov; l'écrivain polonais-britannique Joseph Conrad; les affects actifs et l'expression de la puissance; Éthique, Livre II; idées abstraites et idées générales; les trois genres de connaissance (signes, raison et connaissance des essences); de l’expérimentation de l'éternité; et de la composition des rapports.

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This research has been generously supported through a grant from the College of Liberal Arts, Purdue University.

The description of this dataset is based on the meticulous work of Frédéric Astier, whose Les cours enregistrés de Gilles Deleuze, 1979-1987 has catalogued Deleuze’s seminars for those years.

Special thanks to the family of Gilles Deleuze and the University of Paris 8 for permission to reproduce the material published here.

The Deleuze Seminars

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