Skip to comments.Derrida and the Meaninglessness of Meaning (deconstruction before decomposition)
Posted on 10/12/2004 6:02:10 AM PDT by OESY
...Derrida... was... one of the most famous intellectuals of the past 40 years. His celebrity rivaled that of Jean-Paul Sartre. As the founder, honorary CEO and chief publicist for an abstruse philosophical doctrine he called "deconstruction," Mr. Derrida was celebrated and vilified in about equal measure....
What is deconstruction? ...[D]econstruction comes with a lifetime guarantee to render discussion of any subject completely unintelligible.... the view that the meanings of words are completely arbitrary and that, at bottom, reality is unknowable.
[I]f you dress up the idea in a forbidding vocabulary, full of neologisms and recondite references to philosophy, then you may have a prescription for academic stardom.
Stock in... deconstruction has lost some sheen is simply that, like any academic fashion, deconstruction's methods and vocabulary, once so novel and forbidding, have gradually become part of the common coin of academic discourse, and thus less trendy.
...Who can forget the politician who, accused of wrongdoing, said in his defense that "it all depends on what the meaning of the word 'is' is"?
...Because deconstruction operates by subversion, its evasions are at the same time an attack: an attack on the cogency of language and the moral and intellectual claims that language has codified in tradition. The subversive element inherent in the deconstructive enterprise is another reason that it has exercised such a mesmerizing spell on intellectuals.
Deconstruction promises its adherents not only an emancipation from the responsibilities of truth but also the prospect of engaging in a species of radical activism. A blow against the legitimacy of language is at the same time a blow against the legitimacy of the tradition in which language lives and has meaning. By undercutting the idea of truth, the decontructionist also undercuts the idea of value, including established social, moral, and political values....
(Excerpt) Read more at opinionjournal.com ...
Deconstructing Jacques: His tenets tend
to render discussion of any topic pointless.
Perhaps because he grew up as a French Jew in Muslim Algeria he had a more realistic view of the situation.
Anyway, it floored me when I heard that. He returned to form in condemning the Iraq invasion, though.
A truly meaningless death, capping off a truly meaningless life.
Say "hello" to the worms Jaques. You won't be missed around here.
Jaques will now be deconstructed. By his peers.
Mauling a piece this obscenely should be grounds for criminal prosecution. As I have told you before, subscription articles (articles requiring payment) have no place on FR. You are not doing anyone a service by posting them.
I suppose that means any discussion of deconstruction is unintelligible. Or not...
He is the most important Philosopher in the US today. It is important that conservatives fight these proponents of evil at the source, in academia.
My inclination is to find ways to engage and do battle with those presuppositions. But since Roger Kimball does that more effectively than anyone else alive, I will gladly take cues from him.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.