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« Breillat Alert | Main | Rorschach o' th' Day »

October 15, 2004

The Joke That Had to Happen

Fenster Moop writes:

Dear Blowhards,

Concerning the death of Derrida--

1. Can there be any certainty in the death of Jacques Derrida ? The obituarists’ objective attempts to place his life in a finite context are, necessarily, subject to epistemic relativism, the idea that all such scientific theories are mere “narrations” or social constructions. Surely, a postmodernist deconstruction of their import would inevitably question the foundational conceptual categories of prior science — among them, Derrida’s own existence — which become problematised and relativised.

The London Times

2. Jacques Derrida, the famous French philosopher, is ‘dead’. But as there is no straightforward, one-to-one relationship between the signifier (‘dead’) and the thing signified (the termination or otherwise of the actual person, M. Derrida), we cannot be entirely sure what has happened. We are faced instead with an endless multiplicity of truths, a string of infinite possibilities. I suppose it is entirely up to the reader to decide.

The Spectator

3. It is tempting to say that Jacques Derrida's death has been greatly exaggerated. The French philosopher was so closely associated with nihilism and metaphysical absence that it's perhaps worth wondering whether he ever lived at all.

National Review

4. (The BBC) purports to claim that Jaques Derrida, the father of deconstruction theory, "died" today in a "Paris" hospital at the age "of" 74. But what is the story really telling us?


5. "Monsieur Derrida bequeathed a magnificent legacy to the global intellectual community," said Mr. Chirac. "He has provided us all with the intellectual infrastructure to prevent us from seeking after truth. Thanks to him we know it is fruitless to assert anything with conviction, or to say that any ideology is less true than any other. They are all equally trifling. Their value, if any, lies only in the sport they provide for college professors."

In lieu of flowers, friends of Mr. Derrida are urged to devote their lives to convincing at least one young person that there is nothing to which it is worth devoting one's life.



You say Derrida, I say derider.



posted by Fenster at October 15, 2004


The window that he opened into our
literary understanding was a Transom Agonistes.

Posted by: Winifer Skattebol on October 15, 2004 08:43 PM

The window that he opened into our
literary understanding was a Transom Agonistes.

Posted by: Winifer Skattebol on October 15, 2004 08:43 PM

It's not gay marriage that represents the decline of Western civilization; it's the proliferation of mind-twisting theorists such as Derrida, Lacan, Foucault, and Barthes. I even found Gilles Deleuze in an architecture bookstore. Sample sentence:

"But this does not mean that a problem is merely the shadow or epiphenomenon of its solutions,
or that the solution is only the redundancy or analytical consequence of the problem."

Posted by: Owen St. John on October 16, 2004 12:52 AM

"one" "man" "life" "death" "diminish" "enhance" "us" "all"

Garcon, I'll have the putative ham sammich s'il vous plait.

Posted by: playrink on October 16, 2004 09:32 AM

Here's a fun and interesting posting about Derrida from Kitabkhana's Hurree.

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on October 16, 2004 06:07 PM


Posted by: mp3 on November 5, 2004 12:03 PM

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