The Politics of Deconstruction: Jacques Derrida and the Other of Philosophy
kind of equality indiscriminately to equals and unequals alike!19 And this double quality extends to the corresponding character type that Socrates derives: the democratic man ‘is a manifold man stuffed with most excellent differences, and ... like that city he is the fair and many-coloured [poikilon] one whom many a man and woman would count fortunate in his life, as containing within himself the greatest number of patterns [parageigmata] of constitutions and qualities’. This means that
the past several decades that it is almost a shock to find Rancière excited today by a work that, as Herbert Lindenberger put it, has come to ‘seem old-fashioned’.1 For Mimesis has been criticised regularly in the age of theory and cultural studies not only, as might be expected, for its obvious Eurocentrism and ‘privileging’ of literature, but also for its practice of embedding explications du texte within a Hegelian conception of history. Already in Blindness and Insight (1971), Paul de Man
formation of the notion of différance, but it comes especially strongly to the fore in Specters of Marx in the insistence on Hamlet’s apostrophes concerning time being out of joint. 11. See Maurice Blanchot, ‘The Book to Come’, trans. Sacha Rabinovitch, in The Sirens’ Song (Brighton: Harvester, 1982), pp. 227–48, from Le Livre A Venir (Paris: Gallimard, 1959). 12. Jacques Derrida, Memoires for Paul de Man, trans. Avital Ronell and Eduardo Cadava (New York: Columbia University Press, 1986). 13.
Trotsky, Mao, de Gaulle, any egregious ego ... I then decided that the only way to get rid of this mess, of all those big names and heroes, was to become nobody – entering what Blanchot calls ‘the space of literature’. Only here do things get serious. But here, where? Everywhere – and nowhere. No specific place, or the place without place, of the without. This is how I read or translated ‘Dasein’: existence without essence, or with the only essence of being without essence. So be it. Amen. No
telle religion de la possibilité même de tout commencement et de tout événement.’63 Écart – or, palindromically, trace – thus cendres, reste sans reste (restance), difference within / without difference (différance as ‘the desert-like place without properties or genus’64), etc. What we are arduously groping towards here is the inter-est of an innermost desire,65 an archi-originary rift only accessible through its effects but which it is the responsibility of writing and thinking to respond to,