At a more formal level of his logic of reflection, Hegel uses the unique term "absoluter Gegenstoss" (recoil, counter-push, couter-thrust, or, why not, simply counter punch): a withdrawal that creates what it withdraws from:- Slavoj Zizek, "Absolute Recoil: Towards a New Foundation of Dialectical Materialism"Reflection, therefore finds before it an intermediate which it transcends and from which it is the return. But this return is only the presupposing of what reflection finds before it. What is thus found only comes to be through being left behind... the reflective movement is to be taken as an absolute recoil [absolter Gegenstoss] upon itself, For the presupposition of the return-into-self -- that from which the essence comes, as is only as this return -- is only in the return itself.Absoluter Gegenstoss thus stands for the radical coincidence of opposites in which the action appears as its own counter-action, or, more precisely, in which the negative move (loss, withdrawal) itself generates what it "negates". "What is found only comes to be through being left behind,"and its inversion (it is "only in the return itself" that what we return to emerges, like nations who constitute themselves by way of "returning to their lost roots") are tow sides of what Hegel calls "absolute reflection": a reflection which is no longer external to its object, presupposing it as given, but which, as it were, closes the loop and posits its own presupposition. To put it in Derridean terms, the condition of possibility is here radically and simultaneously the condition of impossibility: the very obstacle to the full assertion of our identity opens up the space for it. Another exemplary case: the Hungarian ruling class "had long 'possessed' (ie, patronized and cultivated) a distinctive music, the so-called magyar nota ('Hungarian tune') which in educated Hungarian circles was regarded as a stylistic emblem of the national identity, and predictably, in the nineteenth century, with the great nationalist revival, this style exploded in operas and symphonies. When, at the beginning of the twentieth century, modernist composers like Bartok and Kodalyi started to collect authentic popular music and discovered that it "was of an altogether different style and character from the magyar nota," and even worse, that it consisted of an inextricable mixture of "all the peoples who inhabited 'greater Hungary'- Romanians, Slovaks, Bulgars, Croats, and Serbs - and even ethnically remoter people like the Turks... or the Arabs of North Africa." For this, predictable, Bartok was reviled by the nationalists and felt compelled to leave Hungary.
This, then, is the dialectical process: an inconsistent mess (first phase, the starting point) which is negated and, through negation, the Origin is projected or posited backwards, so that a tension is created between the present and the lost Origin (second phase). In the third phase, the Origin is perceived as inaccessible, relativized- we are in external reflection, that is, our reflection is external to the posited Origin which is experiences as a transcendent presupposition. In the fourth phase of absolute reflection, our external reflexive movement is transposed back into the Origin itself, as its own self-withdrawal or decentering. We thus reach the triad of positing, external reflection, and absolute reflection.
In his critical reading of Hegel, Badiou proposes his own materialist rendering of the quadruple structure of the dialectical process: "indifferent multiplicities, or ontological unbinding: worlds of appearing, or the logical link; truth-procedure, or subjective eternity," plus the Event itself, the additional "vanishing cause, which is the exact opposite of the Whole." As we have just seen, we can find this materialist version of the dialectical process already in Hegel- apropos the British colonization of India, first there is the "indifferent multiplicity" of pre-colonial India; then the British colonizers brutally intervene, imposing the transcendental structure of the colonial order, justified in terms of Western universalism; then the Indian resistance to colonization develops, pointing out how, in colonizing India, the West is betraying its own legacy of egalitarian emancipation. The anti-colonial struggle thus refers to the Idea of India as a secular democratic state, an Idea which originated in the West. The Indian version of this Idea, however, is not a "synthesis" of the Western secular-egalitarian spirit and the Indian tradition, but a full assertion of the egalitarian spirit by way of cutting the roots that ground it in the Western tradition and affirming its actual universality. In short, only when the Western Idea is "ex-apted" by India does it achieve actual universality: when Indians embrace the European democratic-egalitarian Idea, they become more European than the Europeans themselves.