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Derridadaism

Derridadaism

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Published by davidwalters
Jacques Derrida deconstructed structuralism and revived an ancient dynamic dialectic
under cover of “post-structuralism.”
Jacques Derrida deconstructed structuralism and revived an ancient dynamic dialectic
under cover of “post-structuralism.”

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Published by: davidwalters on Apr 02, 2013
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05/30/2013

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Revival of the Goddess of Reason, Darwin Leon, www.darwinleon.com
DERRIDADAISM
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  The Controversial Structure Jacques Derrida deconstructed structuralism and revived an ancient dynamic dialecticunder cover of “post-structuralism,” thus he was a post-modern philosopher of Heraclitean temperament.Structuralism had been the rage but it smacked of the metaphysical rigidity of thenebulous permanencies of ontology. Structure was another name for the outcome of apresiding being, in itself unmoved, but at once the motivating principle from whichsystems are supposedly derived; such as, figuratively speaking, the principle of the line,which is in truth an invisible non-dimensional point, somehow present throughout theextent of the line, which is itself an unseen, imagined object, deemed to be, for example,
 
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 the principle of a visible arch, when curved, or, for example, the principle of a visibleedge of a table when straight. The history of an idea or concept i.e. an object of thought isa series of such points or imagined beings under cover of different terms.“The entire history of the concept of structure,” posited Derrida in
Writing andDifference,
“must be thought of as a series of substitutions of centre for centre, as alinked chain of determinations of the centre. Successively, and in a regulated fashion, thecentre received different forms or names. The history of metaphysics, like the history of the West, is the history of metaphors and metonymies. Its matrix … is the determinationof Being as presence in all senses of this word. It could be shown that all the namesrelated to fundamentals, to principles, of the centre have always designated an invariablepresence – eidos, archê, telos, energia, ousia, essence, existence, substance, subject,alêtheia, transcendentality, consciousness, God, man, and so forth.”Derrida pointed out that the concept of structure was, up to a certain point, as old as thehills of Western thought - which he calls the Episteme (Thought). Both the concept andour name for structure have, like a venerable old tree with a sign on it, roots “thrust deepinto the soil of ordinary language.” The Epistêmê plunges deep into the fertile linguisticsoil to incorporate the structural concepts below and elaborate figures of speech above.“The structure of structure, although it has always been at work, has always beenneutralized or reduced… by a process of giving it a center or of referring it to a point of presence, a fixed origin… to orient, balance, and organize the structure… to make surethat the organizing principle of the structure would limit what we might call play of thestructureplay of the elements inside the total form. And even today the notion of astructure lacking any center represents the unthinkable itself… (T)he center also closesoff the play which it opens up and makes possible. As a center, it is the point at which thesubstitution of contents, elements, or terms is no longer possibleAt the center, thepermutation or transformation of elements… is forbidden…. (T)he center, whilegoverning the structure, escapes structurality. This is why classical thought concerningstructure could say that the center is, paradoxically, within the structure and outside of it. The center is at the center of the totality, and yet, since the center does not belong to thetotality… the totality is elsewhere. The center is not the center. The concept of centeredstructure, although it represents coherence itself, the condition of epistêmê as philosophyor science, is contradictorily coherent. And as always, coherence in contradictionexpresses the force of a desire.” The notion of a contradictory coherence is standard fare. For instance, an individual is atthe perspectival center of his circumstances and is dependent on his existence as such onthe resistance of those circumstances to the motive force or “desire” that would cause himto persevere eternally without impedance if only he could, but he cannot because if he didhe would not exist. As Heraclitus observed early on, all things come to pass through thecompulsion of strife; if there were no strife, all things would cease to exist.Inasmuch as the nondimensional center or point or principle of a structure or system ororganization is self-contradictory because it is not in itself a structure, static logicians,who believe A cannot be both A and not-A, believe they have good cause to deny its
 
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 existence. Yet a dynamic logician, who is willing to admit to the logically absurd realityof a continuity between extremes, or a coincidence or union of apparent opposites, mightpoint out that the non-dimensionality of the principle of a line—the point continuouslypresent in the line and referred to in its particular infinitudes by pointing clumsily to onesmall place along the line or another—does not disprove the ideal being of an entitywhose concrete existence as a unit is denied.In fact, the concept of the point derived from pointing at points is imminently practical. The principle of an arch in a bridge cannot be directly seen but may be imagined andidealized by the drawing of a line through a series of points, and it may be discovered, forinstance, that a catenary arch, the form we see in the St. Louis arch, a form that can bemathematically expressed in short order, may best sustain the weight of its structure andthose who rely upon it to traverse an impediment. But can the metaphysical beings of ontology do the same, at least metaphorically speaking? A human being, who must havefaith in the ground under him in order to walk, must have faith in transcendent or generalbeing as well, the structure or center of the universe, to imagine and build an airplane andactually fly over the facts below.If the essence of human nature is thinking if man is a rational animal who needs tocommunicate his thoughts for his species to survive. Then philosophy is talk about talk;postmodern thinkers speak of the “universe of discourse” as if that is all there really is.Sociologists naturally borrowed paradigms from the field of linguistics in their search forthe underlying structures of a variety of sociological phenomena. Given the elements of speech, a virtually infinite variety of sentences can be produced from definite rules of syntax and grammar hence it follows that other forms of behavior might have afundamental structure from which their apparent diversity is derived.Nothing and only nothing is absolute, and even then the notion of nothing is onlyrelatively absolute inasmuch as the negative or the nonexistent is dependent on positiveexistence. Chaos or Nothing might be the origin of all things; but order somehowemerges out of chaos and elaborates itself, giving form to all sorts of stuff. Since chaoshas no structure, chaos cannot be the principle Derrida hails as the systemic center unlessit is the absolutely absurd Structure or Logos from which all logical structures fall. If thatwere so, he is talking about nothing, or capital Nothing if you please, the universal god inthe machines, the god that does not exist if what Heraclitus said is true: “This universe,which is the same for all, has not been made by any god or man, but it always has been is,and will be an ever-living fire, kindling itself by regular measures and going out byregular measures.” All there is, then, is eternal change, the fluctuations of an infinitenumber of possible structures or forms.Agnosticism or AtheismExclusive structures or dogmatic constructions are repressive creations. They depend fortheir structures on excluded content hence the repressed is always implied by the creationof the structures and shall invariably return with destructive consequences unlessdeconstructed. But the structure or Center of structures cannot be deconstructed. It is

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