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Aristotle: Metaphysics

That is to say, in any present, there must also be the trace of the absent which defines it OG This reveals a contradiction inherent in the method of Saussure in that he defines terms in terms of their opposites while still attempting to maintain their status as independent units. Derrida will maintain that insofar as any present signifier bears within it traces of absent signifiers, no signifier can possibly be either entirely present or absent.

It is only by privileging presence and marginalizing absence that the thinkers Derrida criticizes can attempt to maintain their grasp on immediate and given meaning, because the trace of absence in any present signifier implies the nullification of the possibility of absolute knowledge OG Such deliberations can give us valuable, problematizing insights into the goals of metaphysical thinking in the history of Western philosophy.

In Limited Inc. All metaphysicians, from Plato to Rousseau, Descartes to Husserl, have proceeded in this way, conceiving good to be before evil, the positive before the negative, the pure before the impure, the simple before the complex, the essential before the accidental, the imitated before the imitation, etc.


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And this is not just one metaphysical gesture among others, it is the metaphysical exigency, that which has been the most constant, most profound and most potent LI Logocentric thought, which we may wish to characterize as thought which does not adequately attend to the contradictions inherent in its own medium discourse , has then always held as its ultimate end the apprehension of some kind of transcendental and absolute truth. Derrida makes a critical step in philosophy by simply attending to his medium in critical terms outside the realm of the hermeneutic.

Mark Reiners (Author of A Kind of Speaking, The Metaphysic of Listening)

Beginning in the Age of Goethe—not coincidentally one of the formative periods of German history—stable cultural references such as authorship, originality, individuality, and Geist, all accessible by way of standardized interpretation practices, cut through and homogenized increasing social complexity; this could only occur, however, because a naturalized language now seen as a lucid carrier of meaning cut through and homogenized the different media.

Extant, specific languages make communication material, and exploring the interplay of terms within a linguistic system is what Derridean deconstructive projects hinge upon. Now, we may return to the previously mentioned question of the ordering of media. Media theorists from Plato onward have often spoken about the supposed dichotomy between speech and writing in terms of hierarchy and competition see orality.

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It would make no sense at all to attack the metaphysical axiom of the essentiality of presence and then simply make the opposite metaphysical claim, privileging absence. Rather, Derrida wishes to bring into question the need for, or even the possibility of, having such a hierarchy at all.

And, should we be convinced by his criticism of logocentric thought, it will seem to be the case that a rethinking of the relationship between the mediums of speech and writing is in order. Works Cited Ward, Graham. Derrida, Jacques, and Gayatri Chakravorty. Saussure, Ferdinand De. Charles Bally and Albert Sechehaye.

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  • Refresh and try again. Upcoming Events. No scheduled events. Add an event. How Are we to interpret them, These non-specific emotive Vapors Of the Gnostic hours of night, Where these details of impression Accumulate and transfuse The act of observation With something of a benediction Vaporous while the unmet but familiar residents slowly sleep Too suddenly Into tomorrow, too suddenly evaporating, by a transitional first light erasure, the Wondrous nocturnal infinities By the dawn replacement with the dull onshore coastal overcast of A proximate Pacific morning And with routine Irritations of rushing to dress, of grasping A brief case while balancing A scalding Coffee without spillage and Commuting to school, or office, Or other urgent urban urgencies with a subliminal anticipation of Forgetting other critical errands?

    Forgetting that you are seeded with infinities, with portico Imagined evenings of sapphire Dusk horizons Luminous with endless Aurora Borealis; with Other infinities of agate and emerald apprehension That are left to fallow Or graduated degradation In the despised survival Imperative Incessancy Of wages, laundry accumulations, unintended Shopping list omissions, Court appointments, delinquent payments, forgotten accumulations of library fines And futile traffic or Co-worker or Marital arguments.

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    Oct 12, PM. Sep 10, PM. Mark Reiners made a comment on Crime and Punishment Quiz. In fact, at one time I owned not only all of his major works but had even owned his copious notebooks for the major novels. I recall reading once in a biography that Freud revered him second only to Shakespeare as the literary figure having the deepest insight into his characters.

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    How true this is with Dostoyevsky is very easy to miss because so much is tacit by virtue of the fact that he is, in a very real sense, at least as much a dramatist as a novelist who demands an attentiveness of his readers to the subtleties which must be inferred between the lines and between the explicit scenes. Stop by, recommend books, offer up poems excerpted , tempt us, taunt us, tell us what to read and where to go to read i No pretensions: just poetry. Stop by, recommend books, offer up poems excerpted , tempt us, taunt us, tell us what to read and where to go to read it!

    Goodreads honors wordsmiths: poets and poetry promoted and prompted here. Add a reference: Book Author. Search for a book to add a reference. We take abuse seriously in our discussion boards. Only flag comments that clearly need our attention. As a general rule we do not censor any content on the site.