Making the Difference: Eternal Return, Simulacrum, and Ontico-Ontological Unity in Deleuze’s Engagement with Nietzsche and Plato



This article argues for a new interpretation of the relation between Deleuze’s engagements with Nietzsche and Plato in the first chapter of Différence et répétition (1968). It (a) argues scholarship has overlooked important features of this relation, (b) reconstructs the text’s motivating problem of the reduction of difference to identity, (c) rethinks Deleuze’s use of “faire la différence” to show its methodological significance relative to Nietzsche and Plato, (d) proposes an account of the basic movement of differential being or becoming figured as the Nietzschean “test” of the eternal return, (e) examines Deleuze’s derivation of the concept of simulacrum from Platonism for his revisionist theory of beings, and (f) proposes a solution to a problem unresolved in existing interpretations of the text: namely, how the text’s theory of beings as simulacra and its theory of being or becoming as the differential movement of the eternal return can have systematic unity.

Publication Title

Comparative and Continental Philosophy