Just Because You Don’t Make Sense, That Doesn’t Mean that Nothing Makes Sense.

THURSDAY

Western Philosophy

Derrida’s philosophical methodology is innovative. Rather than attempting to defend his views using clear analytic arguments, he tries to “deconstruct” language. He uses words in novel ways, makes puns, breaks up words in unusual places, exploits ambiguities and traces inventive etymologies that reveal connections between words that were not obvious before. This method is known as deconstruction because it is designed to undermine presuppositions about meaning and disrupt attempts to achieve clarity through language. Some readers find his deliberate obscurity and language play frustrating. His style is closer, at times, to avant-garde poetry than to traditional philosophy. But Derrida’s work poses a challenge to widespread assumptions that is hard to ignore.

[Jesse Prinz, “Language deconstruction: Jacques Derrida,” in David Papineau, ed., Western Philosophy, (New York, NY, USA: Metro Books, 2012), 56.]

And yet, something tells me that one day people will be ignoring Derrida’s work in droves.

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Jacques Derrida,
as in “Dare I Duh”
(1930-2004)

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