2022-01Thematic Section
Infinity Now! Speculative Philosophy and Addiction


This essay is an attempt to look at the existential phenomenon of being addicted from the perspective of speculative philosophy. The starting point is the description of Walter Benjamin’s narcotic experiences. Further in my considerations I am guided by the Kantian categories of the dialectics of pure reason, with particular emphasis on transcendental ideas. However, only the philosophy of G. W. F. Hegel along with the concepts of desire and habit allows us to comprehend addiction as a wild and unbridled desire for life, taken over by a dead scheme, by a mechanism, automatism. It is in this behavior, and only in it, that we constantly become aware of ourselves, lose ourselves to the specified objectification, obtain finite satisfaction, and repeat that deadness – this what addiction precisely is according to the Phenomenology of Spirit and the Encyclopedia of the Philosophical Sciences. Hegel links it with an attitude of “stubborn subjectivity” that clings to the limits of its solipsistic finiteness, to the “bad infinity” and seeks satisfaction within its borders. In this way, the German philosopher links addictive behavior with the structure of dialectics itself.


addiction, dialectic, speculative philosophy, finitude, bad infinity, happiness, Benjamin, Kant, Hegel

How to cite:

Sosnowski, Maciej A. “Infinity Now! Speculative Philosophy and Addiction.” Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture 6, no. 1 (2022):  18-35. https://doi.org/10.14394/eidos.jpc.2022.0003.


Maciej A. Sosnowski
Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Polish Academy of Sciences
72 Nowy Świat Street, 00-330 Warsaw, Poland


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