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A Deleuzian Theory of Eternity

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Title: A Deleuzian Theory of Eternity
Author: Ables, Brenton
Department: Department of Philosophy
Program: Philosophy
Advisor: Hacker-Wright, JohnLampert, Jay
Abstract: The goal of this dissertation is to construct and defend a theory of eternity using the work of Gilles Deleuze. I will define eternity as the delay between the instant and the moment. This is an original definition. Eternity, in this sense, is not the same thing as timelessness; it does not mean "all of time;" it has nothing to do with God; above all, it does not equate to the endless perpetuation of lived time—i.e., immortality. Instead, eternity pertains solely to the repetition of events. An eternal event is one that can be repeated indefinitely. This project could accurately be described as a single extended argument for the eternal repeatability of events. My general method is to examine Deleuze's writings on the past, present, and future for material relating to eternity. There are indications in Deleuze's work that all three dimensions of time can be identified with eternity in some way. My argument will be that a Deleuzian concept of eternity must be primarily identified with the future, and secondarily with the present and past. The delay between the instant and the moment is instigated by action taken in the present, and while this action initially refers to the past, it is always directed toward the future to come. An event is cut out of the past and pasted in the future from the standpoint of the present moment: instants are the past and future points at which we cut and paste the event. I will show that the delay between the instant and moment arises as the event becomes suspended in a relay between the past, present, and future, remaining forever unassignable to any specific time.
Date: 2019-01
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