The following interview took place between Jacques Bouveresse and Hilary Putnam on May 11, 2001 in Paris at the Collège de France. Sandra Laugier was present, preserved the transcription, and proposed that we publish the text here. It was translated into English by Marie Kerguelen Feldblyum LeBlevennec and lightly edited by Jacques Bouveresse, Juliet Floyd, and Sandra Laugier. Themes covered in the interview include the question of Wittgenstein’s importance in contemporary philosophy, Putnam’s development with respect to realism, especially (...) in philosophy of mathematics, and the differences and motivations for realism in mathematics, physics, and ethics. The editors thank Marie Kerguelen Feldblyum LeBlevennec for her translation, and Jacques Bouveresse, Mario De Caro, and Sandra Laugier for permission to publish this transcription. (shrink)
Responding to questions put to him at a Roundtable held at Villanova University in 1994, Jacques Derrida leads the reader through an illuminating discussion of the central themes of deconstruction. Speaking in English and extemporaneously, Derrida takes up with unusual clarity and great eloquence such topics as the task of philosophy, the Greeks, justice, responsibility, the gift, the community, the distinction between the messianic and the concrete messianisms, and his interpretation of James Joyce. Derrida convincingly refutes the charges of (...) relativism and nihilism that are often leveled at deconstruction by its critics and sets forth the profoundly affirmative and ethico-political thrust of his work. The “Roundtable” is marked by the unusual clarity of Derrida’s presentation and by the deep respect for the great works of the philosophical and literary tradition with which he characterizes his philosophical work. The Roundtable is annotated by John D. Caputo, the David R. Cook Professor of Philosophy at Villanova University, who has supplied cross references to Derrida’s writings where the reader may find further discussion on these topics. Professor Caputo has also supplied a commentary which elaborates the principal issues raised in the Roundtable. In all, this volume represents one of the most lucid, compact and reliable introductions to Derrida and deconstruction available in any language. An ideal volume for students approaching Derrida for the first time, Deconstruction in a Nutshell will prove instructive and illuminating as well for those already familiar with Derrida’s work. (shrink)
Frederick Watkins’ 1953 edition of Rousseau’s _Political Writings_ has long been noted for being fully accurate while representing much of Rousseau’s eloquence and elegance. It contains what is widely regarded as the finest English translation of _The Social Contract_, Rousseau’s greatest political treatise. In addition, this edition offers the best available translation of the late and important _Government of Poland_ and the only published English translation of the fragment _Constitutional Project for Corsica_, which, says Watkins, provides the clearest possible demonstration (...) of the practical implications of Rousseau’s political thought. (shrink)
In this 2004 interview — translated into English and published in its entirety for the first time — Jacques Derrida reflects upon his practices of writing and teaching, about the community of his readers, and explores questions related to corporeity and textuality, sexual difference, desire, politics, Marxism, violence, truth, interpretation, and translation. In the course of the interview, Derrida discusses the work of Martin Heidegger, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Maurice Blanchot, Hélène Cixous, Jean Genet, Paul Celan, and many others.
Jacques Derrida: Law as Absolute Hospitalityãeepresents a comprehensive account and understanding of Derridaâe(tm)s approach to law and justice. Through a detailed reading of Derridaâe(tm)s texts, Jacques de Ville contends that it is only by way of Derrida's deconstruction of the metaphysics of presence, and specifically in relation to the texts of Husserl, Levinas, Freud and Heidegger - that the reasoning behind his elusive works on law and justice can be grasped. Through detailed readings of texts such as To (...) speculate âe" on Freud, Adieu, Declarations of Independence, Before the Law, Cogito and the history of madness, Given Time, Force of Law and Specters of Marx, De Ville contends that there is a continuity in Derridaâe(tm)s thinking, and rejects the idea of an âe~ethical turnâe(tm). Derrida is shown to be neither a postmodernist nor a political liberal, but a radical revolutionary. De Ville also controversially contends that justice in Derridaâe(tm)s thinking must be radically distinguished from Levinasâe(tm)s reflections on âe~the otherâe(tm). It is the notion of absolute hospitality - which Derrida derives from Levinas, but radically transforms - that provides the basis of this argument. Justice must on De Villeâe(tm)s reading be understood in terms of a demand of absolute hospitality which is imposed on both the individual and the collective subject. A much needed account of Derrida's influential approach to law,ãeeJacques Derrida: Law as Absolute Hospitalityãeewill be an invaluable resource for those with an interest in legal theory, and for those with an interest in the ethics and politics of deconstruction. (shrink)
"One of the major works in the development of contemporary criticism and philosophy." -- J. Hillis Miller, Yale University Jacques Derrida's revolutionary theories about deconstruction, phenomenology, psychoanalysis, and structuralism, first voiced in the 1960s, forever changed the face of European and American criticism. The ideas in De la grammatologie sparked lively debates in intellectual circles that included students of literature, philosophy, and the humanities, inspiring these students to ask questions of their disciplines that had previously been considered improper. Thirty (...) years later, the immense influence of Derrida's work is still igniting controversy, thanks in part to Gayatri Spivak's translation, which captures the richness and complexity of the original. This corrected edition adds a new index of the critics and philosophers cited in the text and makes one of contemporary criticism's most indispensable works even more accessible and usable. (shrink)
A rich exploration of the idea of friendship and its political consequences, past and future, by the most influential of contemporary philosophers. Until relatively recently, Jacques Derrida was seen by many as nothing more than the high priest of Deconstruction, by turns stimulating and fascinating, yet always somewhat disengaged from the central political questions of our time. Or so it seemed. Derrida's "political turn," marked especially by the appearance of Specters of Marx, has surprised some and delighted others. In (...) The Politics of Friendship Derrida renews and enriches this orientation through an examination of the political history of the idea of friendship pursued down the ages. Derrida's thoughts are haunted throughout the book by the strange and provocative address attributed to Aristotle, "my friends, there is no friend" and its inversions by later philosophers such as Montaigne, Kant, Nietzsche, Schmitt and Blanchot. The exploration allows Derrida to recall and restage the ways in which all the oppositional couples of Western philosophy and political thought—friendship and enmity, private and public life—have become madly and dangerously unstable. At the same time he dissects genealogy itself, the familiar and male-centered notion of fraternity and the virile virtue whose authority has gone unquestioned in our culture of friendship and our models of democracy The future of the political, for Derrida, becomes the future of friends, the invention of a radically new friendship, of a deeper and more inclusive democracy. This remarkable book, his most profoundly important for many years, offers a challenging and inspiring vision of that future. (shrink)
Is there, today," asks Jacques Derrida, "another 'question of religion'?" Derrida's writings on religion situate and raise anew questions of tradition, faith, and sacredness and their relation to philosophy and political culture. He has amply testified to his growing up in an Algerian Jewish, French-speaking family, to the complex impact of a certain Christianity on his surroundings and himself, and to his being deeply affected by religious persecution. Religion has made demands on Derrida, and, in turn, the study of (...) religion has benefited greatly from his extensive philosophical contributions to the field. Acts of Religion brings together for the first time Derrida's key writings on religion, along with two new essays translated by Gil Anidjar that appear here for the first time in any language. These texts are organized around the secret holding of links between the personal, the political, and the theological. In these texts, Derrida's reflections on religion span from negative theologyto the limits of reason and to hospitality. Acts of Religion will serve as an excellent introduction to Derrida's remarkable contribution to religious studies. (shrink)
Using the philosophy of Jean-Luc Nancy as an anchoring point, Jacques Derrida in this book conducts a profound review of the philosophy of the sense of touch, from Plato and Aristotle to Jean-Luc Nancy, whose ground-breaking book Corpus he discusses in detail. Emmanuel Levinas, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Edmund Husserl, Didier Franck, Martin Heidegger, Francoise Dastur, and Jean-Louis Chre;tien are discussed, as are Rene; Descartes, Diderot, Maine de Biran, Fe;lix Ravaisson, Immanuel Kant, Sigmund Freud, and others. The scope of Derrida’s deliberations (...) makes this book a virtual encyclopedia of the philosophy of touch (and the body). Derrida gives special consideration to the thinking of touch in Christianity and, in discussing Jean-Luc Nancy’s essay “Deconstruction of Christianity,” devotes a section of the book to the sense of touch in the Gospels. Another section concentrates on “the flesh,” as treated by Merleau-Ponty and others in his wake. Derrida’s critique of intuitionism, notably in the phenomenological tradition, is one of the guiding threads of the book. On Touching includes a wealth of notes that provide an extremely useful bibliographical resource. Personal and detached all at once, this book, one of the first published in English translation after Jacques Derrida’s death, serves as a useful and poignant retrospective on the work of the philosopher. A tribute by Jean-Luc Nancy, written a day after Jacques Derrida’s death, is an added feature. (shrink)
Like a navigator, Derrida sets out from a Europe that has always defined itself as the capital of culture, the headland of thought, in whose name and for whose benefit exploration of other lands, other peoples, and other ways of thinking ...
One of the most influential and controversial thinkers of the twentieth-century, Jacques Derrida’s ideas on deconstruction have had a lasting impact on philosophy, literature and cultural studies. Jacques Derrida: Basic Writings is the first anthology to present his most important philosophical writings and is an indispensable resource for all students and readers of his work. Barry Stocker’s clear and helpful introductions set each reading in context, making the volume an ideal companion for those coming to Derrida’s writings for (...) the first time. The selections themselves range from his most infamous works including Speech and Phenomena and Writing and Difference to lesser known discussion on aesthetics, ethics and politics. (shrink)