Deconstruction in a Nutshell

Deconstruction in a Nutshell

A Conversation with Jacques Derrida, With a New Introduction

This volume, now with a substantial new Introduction, represents one of the most lucid, compact and reliable introductions to Derrida and deconstruction available in any language.

Responding to questions put to him at a roundtable held at Villanova University in 1994, Jacques Derrida leads the reader through an illuminating discussion of the central themes of deconstruction. Speaking in English and extemporaneously, Derrida takes up with unusual clarity and great eloquence such topics as the task of philosophy, the Greeks, justice, responsibility, the gift, community, and the messianic. Derrida refutes the charges of relativism that are often leveled at deconstruction by its critics and sets forth the profoundly affirmative and ethico-political thrust of his work.

The roundtable is marked by an unusual clarity that continues into the second part of the book, in which one of Derrida’s most influential readers, John D. Caputo, elaborates upon Derrida’s comments and supplies material for further discussion.

This edition also includes a substantial new Introduction by Caputo that discusses the original context of the book and traces the development of deconstruction since Derrida’s death in 2004, from the rise of new materialisms to return to religion.

Long one of the most lucid and reliable introductions to Derrida and deconstruction available in any language, and an ideal volume for students, Deconstruction in a Nutshell will also prove illuminating for those already familiar with Derrida’s work.

  • Cover
  • Title
  • Copyright
  • Dedication
  • Contents
  • Acknowledgments
  • Abbreviations
  • Introduction (2020): Specters of Derrida
  • Part One The Villanova Roundtable: A Conversation with Jacques Derrida
  • Part Two A Commentary: Deconstruction in a Nutshell
    • 1. Deconstruction in a Nutshell: The Very Idea (!)
      • The Aporetics of the Nutshell
      • The Axiomatics of Indignation (The Very Idea!)
      • Apologia: An Excuse for Violence
      • Nutshells, Six of Them
    • 2. The Right to Philosophy
      • Of Rights, Responsibilities, and a New Enlightenment
      • Institutional Initiatives
      • Between the "Department of Philosophy" and a Philosophy to Come
    • 3. Khôra: Being Serious with Plato
      • A Hoax
      • Deconstruction Is Serious Business
      • An Exorbitant Method
      • Khôra
      • Two Tropics of Negativity
      • Différance: Khôra Is its Surname
    • 4. Community Without Community
      • Hospitality
      • Identity Without Identity
      • An Open Quasi-Community
    • 5. Justice, If Such a Thing Exists
      • Doing Justice to Derrida
      • Deconstruction and the Possibility of Justice
      • The Gift
      • Dike: Derrida, Heidegger and Dis-junctive Justice
    • 6. The Messianic: Waiting for the Future
      • The Messianic Twist in Deconstruction
      • Faith Without Religion
      • The Messianic and the Messianisms:
        • Which Comes First?
        • When Will You Come?
    • 7. Re-Joyce, Say "Yes"
      • Between Husserl and Joyce
      • The Gramophone Effect
      • Joyce's Signature
      • Inaugurations: Encore
    • A Concluding Amen
  • Bibliography
  • Index of Names
  • Index of Subjects


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