The article enters a heated debate about the ideals and organization of the postmodern left. Hardt and Negri, two key figures in this debate, claim that their concept of the multitude – a revolutionary, proletarian body that organizes singularities – integrates the insights of Deleuze and Lenin. I argue, however, that Deleuze anticipated and resisted a Leninist appropriation of his political theory. This essay challenges the widely accepted assumption that Hardt and Negri carry forth Deleuze’s legacy. At the same time, the essay advocates Deleuze’s concept of left assemblages – protean political bodies working for freedom and equality – as a valuable but under-appreciated contribution to the liberal-democratic tradition.
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