Lessons to Live (1): Posthumous Fragments, for Jacques Derrida

Derrida Today 1 (2):247-265 (2008)
Abstract
Written as a last, long posthumous letter to Jacques Derrida, the essay turns to the philosopher's last and, for the living, most important lesson – on ‘learning to live.’ In particular, it addresses – as constitutive of his unique ‘heterodidactics’ – two discrete communications on the subject. The first, in Spectres de Marx (1993), declares the lesson to be at once impossible and necessary, that is, ‘ethics itself’; in the second, the last interview ‘Je suis en guerre contre moi-même’ published just before his death in 2004, Derrida confesses to ‘have remained uneducable’ on the subject. The essay reflects on the performative significance of this contradiction in the context of Derrida's intimacy with death, his taste for mourning, and his practice of writing as an experience of dying and resurrection
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