Instead of emphasising the presence of a subject to themselves (ie. The most prominent opposition with which Derrida’s earlier work is concerned is that between speech and writing. This is partly because it is even problematic to speak of a ‘work’ of deconstruction, since deconstruction only highlights what was already revealed in the text itself. Transactions. Agger 1994). Term originally used by Heidegger to characterize the central mistake of western metaphysics. His preoccupation with language in this text is typical of much of his early work, and since the publication of these and other major texts (including Dissemination, Glas, The Postcard, Spectres of Marx, The Gift of Death, and Politics of Friendship), deconstruction has gradually moved from occupying a major role in continental Europe, to also becoming a significant player in the Anglo-American philosophical context. According to Derrida then, metaphysics involves installing hierarchies and orders of subordination in the various dualisms that it encounters (M 195). According to Derrida, genuine hospitality before any number of unknown others is not, strictly speaking, a possible scenario (OH 135, GD 70, AEL 50, OCF 16). 172 only the absence of a transcendental signi ... John Dewey, Jacques Derrida, and the metaphysics of presence. But web 2.0 suicide machine terribly overlooks various good aspects of social networking sites like its power to organize people to ignite movements. On the other hand, as well as demanding some kind of mastery of house, country or nation, there is a sense in which the notion of hospitality demands a welcoming of whomever, or whatever, may be in need of that hospitality. There is no temporal or spatial distance between speaker, speech, and listener, since the speaker hears himself speak at the same moment the listener does. He suggests that the so-called ‘successful’ mourning of the deceased other actually fails – or at least is an unfaithful fidelity – because the other person becomes a part of us, and in this interiorisation their genuine alterity is no longer respected. Derrida’s critique of the metaphysics of presence introduces a play of absence and presence. Jacques Derrida first read his paper “Structure, Sign and Play in the Discourse of Human Sciences (1966)” at the John Hopkins International Colloquium on “The Language of Criticism and the Sciences of Man” in October 1966 articulating for the first time a post structuralist theoretical paradigm. A deconstruction that entertained any type of grand prophetic narrative, like a Marxist story about the movement of history toward a pre-determined future which, once attained, would make notions like history and progress obsolete, would be yet another vestige of logocentrism and susceptible to deconstruction (SM). Moreover, metaphysical thought prioritises presence and purity at the expense of the contingent and the complicated, which are considered to be merely aberrations that are not important for philosophical analysis. A theory of the subject is incapable of accounting for the slightest decision (PF 68-9), because, as he rhetorically asks, “would we not be justified in seeing here the unfolding of an egological immanence, the autonomic and automatic deployment of predicates or possibilities proper to a subject, without the tearing rupture that should occur in every decision we call free?” (AEL 24). ), is something that cannot conform to either polarity of a dichotomy (eg. Derrida’s initial work in philosophy was largely phenomenological, and his early training as a philosopher was done largely through the lens of Husserl. The deconstructive strategy is to unmask these too-sedimented ways of thinking, and it operates on them especially through two steps—reversing dichotomies and attempting to corrupt the dichotomies themselves. All of these works have been influential for different reasons, but it is Of Grammatology that remains his most famous work (it is analysed in some detail in this article). In its first and most famous instantiation, undecidability is one of Derrida’s most important attempts to trouble dualisms, or more accurately, to reveal how they are always already troubled. This is Derrida’s ‘possible’ conception of hospitality, in which our most well-intentioned conceptions of hospitality render the “other others” as strangers and refugees (cf. One example of this might be that we write something down because we may soon forget it, or to communicate something to someone who is not with us. Significantly, however, according to Derrida, the existential force of this demand for an absolute altruism can never be assuaged, and yet equally clearly it can also never be fulfilled, and this ensures that the condition of the possibility of the gift is inextricably associated with its impossibility. The messianic refers predominantly to a structure of our existence that involves waiting – waiting even in activity – and a ceaseless openness towards a future that can never be circumscribed by the horizons of significance that we inevitably bring to bear upon that possible future.  Differance is also the “hinge” between speech and writing, and between inner meaning and outer representation. Derrida is always reluctant to impose ‘my text’, ‘your text’ designations too conspicuously in his texts. Of course, différance cannot be exhaustively defined, and this is largely because of Derrida’s insistence that it is “neither a word, nor a concept”, as well as the fact that the meaning of the term changes depending upon the particular context in which it is being employed. Authors: Robert J. Shepherd. a loved one, God, etc. It is on that condition alone that deconstruction will provide the means of intervening in the field of oppositions it criticises” (M 195). Metaphysics creates dualistic oppositions and installs a hierarchy that unfortunately privileges one term of each dichotomy (presence before absence, speech before writing, and … Poised in the interstices between philosophy and non-philosophy (or philosophy and literature), it is not difficult to see why this is the case. In this section, I will attempt to reveal the shared logic upon which these aporias rely. Derrida’s enduring references to the metaphysics of presence borrows heavily from the work of Heidegger. He hence moved from Algiers to France, and soon after he also began to play a major role in the leftist journal Tel Quel. While they are presented schematically here, these inter-related claims constitute Derrida’s major arguments against phenomenology. the so-called living-present), Derrida strategically utilises a conception of time that emphasises deferral. He would say that armed with writing the nations who knew writing had a deliberate and consciously organized plot. ;discussion about the concept of metaphysics of presence in the work of Jacques Derrida and his deconstructionist theory. In Memoires: for Paul de Man, which was written almost immediately following de Man’s death in 1983, Derrida reflects upon the political significance of his colleague’s apparent Nazi affiliation in his youth, and he also discusses the pain of losing his friend. He states that “there is nothing outside the text ” [there is no outside-text; il n’y a pas de hors-texte] (158). Of course, it might be objected that even if it is psychologically difficult to give without also receiving (and in a manner that is tantamount to taking) this does not in-itself constitute a refutation of the logic of genuine giving. In Of Grammatology and elsewhere, Derrida argues that signification, broadly conceived, always refers to other signs, and that one can never reach a sign that refers only to itself. So Derrida would say that is it the metaphysics of presence that is predominant there. Then Derrida argues that logocentrism is a widely held belied in the West, and this somehow reveals the Western belief in "metaphysics of presence", the idea that presence of being is somehow more important, "privileged" over absence or difference. As he says, “Abraham is at the same time, the most moral and the most immoral, the most responsible and the most irresponsible” (GD 72). There is absence in what was supposedly present. Differance is indefinable, and cannot be explained by the “metaphysics of presence.” 1.5 Colonialism and Writing. Distancing himself from the various philosophical movements and traditions that preceded him on the French intellectual scene (phenomenology, existentialism, and structuralism), he developed a strategy called “deconstruction” in the mid 1960s. Responsibility is enduring this trial of the undecidable decision, where attending to the call of a particular other will inevitably demand an estrangement from the “other others” and their communal needs. Derrida’s strategy uncovers an absence of presence which leads to loopholes, double meanings, etc. The problem of undecidability is also evident in more recent texts including The Gift of Death. To represent Derrida’s position more precisely, true responsibility consists in oscillating between the demands of that which is wholly other (in Abraham’s case, God, but also any particular other) and the more general demands of a community (see Section 6). When Derrida was awarded an honorary doctorate at Cambridge in 1992, there were howls of protest from many ‘analytic’ philosophers. To counter the pervasiveness of the ‘metaphysics of presence’ in Western Philosophy – Derrida uses the neologism ‘Differance’ – a playful combination of ‘differ’ and ‘to defer’, to demonstrate that the meaning of a linguistic sign is the simultaneous operation of distinction and temporality. the written). Deconstruction has at least two aspects: literary and philosophical. Derrida does not explore in the same detail how the same logic of supplementarity governs Rousseau’s Discourse on the Origin and Foun-dation of Inequality among Men but it is not hard to reconstruct it on the basis of what Derrida says about the Essay on the Origin of Lan-guages. As Derrida would say, there are binary opposites at work here like virtual culture and real nature, presence and absence, writing and speaking. To pose the problem in inverse fashion, it might be suggested that for Derrida, all decisions are a faith and a tenuous faith at that, since were faith and the decision not tenuous, they would cease to be a faith or a decision at all (cf. To an extent Derrida seems to see this as inevitable, “There is no sense in doing without the concepts of metaphysics in order to attack metaphysics”; however, the awareness of this process is important for him – “Here it is a question of a critical relationship to the language of the human sciences and a question of a critical responsibility of the discourse. In Chinese philosophy, classical Daoism offers a thinking that does not favor the light metaphor over its opposite. According to him, this is because: “I am responsible to anyone (that is to say, to any other) only by failing in my responsibility to all the others, to the ethical or political generality. liberalism). In particular, the theme of responsibility to the other (for example, God or a beloved person) leads Derrida to leave the idea that responsibility is associated with a behavior publicly and rationally justifiable by general principles. While Derrida’s claims to being someone who speaks solely in the margins of philosophy can be contested, it is important to take these claims into account. He will only insist that an oscillation between both sides of the aporia is necessary for responsibility (OCF 51). Derrida’s point hence seems to be that in mourning, the ‘otherness of the other’ person resists both the process of incorporation as well as the process of introjection. Metaphysics, according to Derrida, has always been a metaphysics of presence, and has always conceived temporality in terms of the present.13 Derrida, on the one hand, in Speech and Phenomena, acknowledges, along with Heidegger, the admirable In criticizing logocentrism’s privileging of speech on the grounds of the metaphysics of presence, Derrida does not wish to assert that writing is in some sense superior or more essential. He was expelled from one school because there was a 7% limit on the Jewish population, and he later withdrew from another school on account of the anti-semitism. In Of Grammatology, Derrida reveals and then undermines the speech-writing opposition that he argues has been such an influential factor in Western thought.