Patrice Guillamaud

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Patrice Guillamaud (born: 1989) is a French philosopher.

The following is adapted and translated from "La Philosophie comme ousiologie", possibly written by Guillamaud himself.

An agrégé of philosophy and a docteur, he teaches philosophy in Khâgne at the Descartes à Tours highschool.

Since the start of his studies at the Université de Bordeaux, he has devoted himself to a new philosophical science, ousiology.

Indifferent to the exigencies of professional intrigues but with no contempt concerning those who expend energy on building a career, knowing that the institution, with the rigor and servitudes that are proper to it, remains a non-contemptible means of making philosophy live by making philosophers live, he mainly devotes himself to his oeuvre. Teaching is, for him, a distraction that his circumstances have providentially put in his way. This distraction allows him, not without pleasure, to also do philosophy with his students who, most of the time, are submitted to the good grace of his exigencies all by preparing, often very effectively and sometimes very brilliantly, high level competitions.

What is Ousiology?

Ousiology is the science of essences. Essence is what makes a thing what it is, what distinguishes one thing from another. It is the definition or nature of each thing. Defining philosophy as ousiology is therefore very logically defining the essence of philosophy as a science of essences. As Socrates said, thinking is firstly knowing of what one speaks, it is, by definition, attempting to define what exactly is the problem before attempting the least resolution of this same problem.

In the history of philosophy, there are two great currents that refer to essence. There is firstly the metaphysical or Platonic current, which defines essences as correlatively being the veritable concrete reality of each thing, such as the essence of beds or the essence of the good. Secondly, there is the phenomenological or Husserlian current, which defines essences as being objects that consciousness targets and that, nonetheless, are not pure creations but are imposed to it, such as the essence of the triangle in mathematics or the essence of the table in perception. If, for the metaphysicians, essences are substances hidden behind appearances, for the phenomenologists, they are, on the contrary, pure manifestations.

Ousiology is a new science insofar as it has the ambition of firstly operating a radicalization of phenomenology as thought of reality qua being pure manifestation and secondly a synthesis between metaphysics and phenomenology. In this second perspective, ousiology is a critique of metaphysics and phenomenology. In effect, metaphysics alone and phenomenology alone together operate one and the same reduction of reality to the exclusive unity of the absolute. It is thus that the absolute is, for the Platonic metaphysicians, the Good or God. It is thus that the absolute, for the Husserlian phenomenologists, is consciousness or the subject. Ousiology thus ultimately has the ambition of proposing a new manner of thinking the real that is at the same time the recognition of an irreducible plurality of absolutes that are so many pure manifestations.

It is thus that ousiology distinguishes three absolutes: interiority as affectivity, exteriority as others [autrui], thing and technics and thought as ontology or thought of being. The pure co-existence of these three absolutes is being as co-being or pure mutual overture without confusion or blending. It is this mutual overture within mutual respect that Guillamaud proposes to call Love, Tolerance, or Peace, namely still the Divine or the Human.

Ousiology is thus a new manner of thinking the real by respecting its plurality without falling into the nonsense/whatever [n'importe quoi] of confusion and by giving an eminently metaphysical and phenomenological, i.e., ontological scope to the ethical principles of Love, Tolerance, and Peace. It is a perspective perfectly conformal to the fundamental tradition of western philosophy but that is found here completely transfigured, the tradition which consists, from Plato with the Good to Emmanuel Lévinas with the Other, in making a moral value a principle of being.



  • Thesis: La renonciation ou les trois essences de l'immanence : essai d'ontologie ousiologique (under the guidance of Jacques Colette), Tours, 1992. (French)
  • Qu'est-ce que vivre ?: Renonciation et accomplissement, Paris: L'Harmattan (Nous, les sans-philosophie), 2008. ARG (French)
  • La gloire dans la défaite : essai sur le sacrifice et la renonciation dans l'oeuvre de John Ford, Paris: Céfal, 2011. (French)
  • Passerelles : Philosophie Terminales, with Hervé Boillot, Lisa Rodrigues de Oliveira, Frédéric Manzini, David Larre, Matthieu Lahure, Aurélie Ledoux, Karine Tordo Rombaut, Charles Mazouer, Larissa Paulin, and Tania Mirsalis, Paris: Hachette, 2013. (French)
  • L'essence de la renonciation : Essai d'ousiologie égologique sur la trinité de l'immanence, Paris: Kimé, 2014. (French)
  • Les parapluies de Cherbourg : Jacques Demy, Paris: Céfal, 2014. (French)
  • Il était une fois dans l'Ouest : Sergio Leone, Paris: Céfal, 2014. (French)
  • Le cinéma et la renonciation : Essai d'ousiologie esthétique-cinématographique, Paris: Cerf, 2015. (French)
  • Anti-Marion : Essai sur la barbarie universitaire et philosophique, Paris: Kimé, 2015. (French)
  • La femme, l'esclave et le génie : traité pour une réhabilitation philosophique des natures humaine, Paris: Kimé, 2016. (French)
  • L'art et la renonciation : Essai d'ousiologie esthétique, Paris: Cerf, 2016. (French)
  • Le sens de l'Islam : L'Apocalypse ou la Trinité, Paris: Kimé, 2017. (French)
  • Le charme et la sublimation : Essai sur le désir et la renonciation dans l'œuvre d'Eric Rohmer, Paris: Cerf, 2017. (French)
  • La renonciation ou la vie de la pensée, Paris: Kimé, 2018. (French)
  • La jouissance et l'espérance : Essai sur le bonheur et la renonciation, Paris: Cerf, 2019. (French)
  • Les essences de la pensée : essai d'ousiologie herméneutique, tome 1 : Platon, Descartes, Kant, Paris: Kimé, 2019. (French)
  • Les essences de la pensée : essai d'ousiologie herméneutique, tome 2 : D'Héraclite à Bergson, Paris: Kimé, 2019. (French)
  • Autrui, la chose et la technique: Essai d'ousiologie altérologique sur les trois essences de l'extériorité, Paris: Kimé, 2021. (French)
  • La nation. Pour une définition philosophique, Paris: Kimé, 2022. (French)


  • La médiation chez Aristote, In: Revue Philosophique de Louvain. Quatrième série, tome 85, n°68, 1987, pp. 457-474. pdf (French)
  • L'essence du kairos, In: Revue des Études Anciennes. Tome 90, n°3-4., 1988, pp. 359-371. pdf (French)
  • L'autre et l'immanence: Etude comparée sur les ontologies de Michel Henry et d'Emmanuel Lévinas, Revue de Métaphysique et de Morale, 94e Année, No. 2 (Avril-Juin 1989), pp. 251-272. sci-hub (French)
  • L'indétermination, la détermination et la relation : les trois essences de l'être., In: Revue Philosophique de Louvain. Quatrième série, tome 87, n°75, 1989, pp. 427-469 pdf (French)
  • Le Négatif chez Kant, Les Études philosophiques, No. 2, PHILOSOPHIE ALLEMANDE (AVRIL-JUIN 1990), pp. 173-185. sci-hub (French)
  • L'Essence de la renonciation, Les Études philosophiques, No. 4, RECHERCHES (OCTOBRE-DÉCEMBRE 1991), pp. 475-500. sci-hub (French)
  • Remplissement et accomplissement. Étude critique sur l'évidence chez Husserl, Les Études philosophiques, No. 3, PHILOSOPHIE ANGLAISE (JUILLET-SEPTEMBRE 1994), pp. 371-403. sci-hub (French)
  • La transcendance inversée. Étude critique sur l’immanence chez Michel Henry et introduction aux problématiques phénoménologiques de la renonciation et de l’immanental. In: Revue Philosophique de Louvain. Troisième série, tome 109, n°3, 2011, pp. 553-592. pdf (French)


  • La transcendance inversée : sur l’immanence, la renonciation et l’immanental, in: Grégori Jean, Jean Leclercq, Nicolas Monseu, La Vie et les vivants : (Re-)lire Michel Henry, Presses universitaires de Louvain, 2013, pp. 345-54 text
  • La langue, le verbe et l'amour : Pour une restauration de l'essentialisme, in: Le langage et ses distorsions, Paris: Qs?, 2020.


  • Les Sophistes by Gilbert Romeyer-Dherbey, Revue de Métaphysique et de Morale, 92e Année, No. 4, Philosophie française (Octobre-Décembre 1987), pp. 554-555. sci-hub (French)
  • Conscience et humanité selon Husserl. Essai sur le sujet politique by Yves Thierry, Les Études philosophiques, No. 2, RECHERCHES EN PHÉNOMÉNOLOGIE (AURIL-JUIN 1998), pp. 273-274. sci-hub