A collection of essays by one of Jacques Derrida's friends and foremost commentators. Newly available in paperback.
not half no end
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For more than 30 years and until his death in 2004, Jacques Derrida remained one of the most influential contemporary philosophers. It may be difficult to evaluate what forms his legacy will take in the future but Derrida Now provides some provocative suggestions. Derrida's often-controversial early reception was based on readings of his complex works, published in journals and collected in books. More recently attention has tended to focus on his later work, which grew out of the seminars that he presented each year in France and the US. The full texts of these seminars are now the subject of a major publication project, to be produced over the next ten years. Derrida Now presents contemporary articles based on or around the study of Derrida. It provides a critical introduction to Derrida's complex and controversial thought, offers careful analysis of some of his most important concepts, and includes essays that address the major strands of his thought. Derrida's influence reached not only into philosophy but also into other fields concerned with literature, politics, visual art, law, ecology, psychoanalysis, gender and sexuality and this book will appeal to readers in all these disciplines. Contributors include Peggy Kamuf, Geoff Bennington, Nicholas Royle, Roy Sellars, Graham Allen and Irving Goh.
The indebtedness of contemporary thinkers to Derrida's project of deconstruction is unquestionable, whether as a source of inspiration or the grounds of critical antagonism. This collection considers: how best to recall deconstruction? Rather than reduce it to an object of historical importance or memory, these essays analyze its significance in terms of complex matrices of desire; provoked in this way, deconstruction cannot be dismissed as 'dead', nor unproblematically defended as alive and well. Repositioned on the threshold of life-death, deconstruction profoundly complicates the field of critical thought which still struggles to memorialize, inter, or reduce the deconstructive corpus to ashes.
Not only does the library have a long and complex history and politics, but it has an ambivalent presence in Western culture – both a site of positive knowledge and a site of error, confusion, and loss. Nevertheless, in literary studies and in the humanities, including book history, the figure of the library remains in many senses under-researched. This collection brings together established and up-and-coming researchers from a number of practices – literary and cultural studies, gender studies, book history, philosophy, visual culture, and contemporary art –with an effective historical sweep ranging from the time of Sumer to the present day. In the context of the rise of archive studies, this book attends specifically and meta-critically to the figure of the library as a particular archival form, considering the traits that constitute (or fail to constitute) the library as institution or idea, and questions its relations to other accumulative modes, such as the archive in its traditional sense, the museum, or the filmic or digital archive. Across their diversity, and in addition to their international standard of research and writing, each chapter is unified by commitment to analyzing the complex cultural politics of the library form.
Newly available in paperback, this book traces a close engagement with Derrida's writing over two decades examining the relationship between deconstruction, literature and ethics.
In developing his own conception of the 'figure', Andrew Benjamin has written an innovative and provocative study of the complex relationship between philosophy, the history of painting and their presentation of both Jews and animals. Newly available in p
Jacques Derrida famously stated in Specters of Marx that a justice worthy of the name must call us to render justice not only to the living but also to the dead. In The Politics and Pedagogy of Mourning, Timothy Secret argues that offering a persuasive account of such a duty requires establishing a discussion among the 20th century's three key thinkers on death – Heidegger, Levinas and Freud. Despite arguing that none of these three figures' discourses offers us a complete account of our duty to the dead and that it remains impossible to unify them into a single, consistent and correct approach, Secret nevertheless offers an account of how Derrida managed to produce an always singular articulation of these discourses in each of the acts of eulogy he offered for his philosophical contemporaries. This is one of the first monographs to pay particular attention to the key role any contemporary account of the ethics of eulogy must grant to the revolutionary theoretical work on the materiality of crypts and phantoms offered by the psychoanalysts Nicolas Abraham and Maria Torok. Their work is shown to supplement major limitations in traditional philosophical accounts of the ethical relation. The account of eulogy as a privileged space where different discourses act on each other under the pressure of responding responsibly to an always singular loss proves itself essential reading not only for those interested in understanding Derrida's overtly political works, but also offers an account of a performative training in negotiating aporias that arise in political society – the result of which is a pedagogy in the art of civility whose relevance today is more timely than ever.
"Multiverse" cosmologies imagine our universe as just one of a vast number of others. While this idea has captivated philosophy, religion, and literature for millennia, it is now being considered as a scientific hypothesis—with different models emerging from cosmology, quantum mechanics, and string theory. Beginning with ancient Atomist and Stoic philosophies, Mary-Jane Rubenstein links contemporary models of the multiverse to their forerunners and explores the reasons for their recent appearance. One concerns the so-called fine-tuning of the universe: nature's constants are so delicately calibrated that it seems they have been set just right to allow life to emerge. For some thinkers, these "fine-tunings" are evidence of the existence of God; for others, however, and for most physicists, "God" is an insufficient scientific explanation. Hence the allure of the multiverse: if all possible worlds exist somewhere, then like monkeys hammering out Shakespeare, one universe is bound to be suitable for life. Of course, this hypothesis replaces God with an equally baffling article of faith: the existence of universes beyond, before, or after our own, eternally generated yet forever inaccessible to observation or experiment. In their very efforts to sidestep metaphysics, theoretical physicists propose multiverse scenarios that collide with it and even produce counter-theological narratives. Far from invalidating multiverse hypotheses, Rubenstein argues, this interdisciplinary collision actually secures their scientific viability. We may therefore be witnessing a radical reconfiguration of physics, philosophy, and religion in the modern turn to the multiverse.