Jacques Derrida Structure Sign And Play Pdf Online

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Play is the disruption of presence. The presence of an element is always a signifying and substitutive reference inscribed in a system of differences and the movement of a chain. Play is always play of absence and presence, but if it is to be thought radically, play must be conceived of before the alternative of presence and absence SSP But it does this from within the framework of the newer ways of thinking, which involve diverse attempts to understand the generation of knowledge according to a broadly structuralist matrix, against the classical point of view.

derrida structure, sign and play pdf

Perhaps something has occurred in the history of the concept of structure that could be called an "event," if this loaded word did not entail a meaning which it is precisely the function of structural-or structuralist-thought to reduce or to suspect.

But let me use the term "event" anyway, employing it with caution and as if in quotation marks. In this sense, this event will have the exterior form of a rupture and a redoubling.

It would be easy enough to show that the concept of structure and even the word "structure" itself are as old as the episteme - that is to say, as old as western science and western philosophy-and that their roots thrust deep into the soil of ordinary language, into whose deepest recesses the episteme plunges to gather them together once more, making them part of itself in a metaphorical displacement.

Nevertheless, up until the event which I wish to mark out and define, structure-or rather the structurality of structure-although it has always been involved, has always been neutralized or reduced, and this by a process of giving it a center or referring it to a point of presence, a fixed origin. The function of this center was not only to orient, balance, and organize the structure-one cannot in fact conceive of an unorganized structure-but above all to make sure that the organizing principle of the structure would limit what we might call the freeplay of the structure.

No doubt that by orienting and organizing the coherence of the system, the center of a structure permits the freeplay of its elements inside the total form. And even today the notion of a structure lacking any center represents the unthinkable itself.

Nevertheless, the center also closes off the freeplay it opens up and makes possible. Qua center, it is the point at which the substitution of contents, elements, or terms is no longer possible. At the center, the permutation or the transformation of elements which may of course be structures enclosed within a structure is forbidden. At least this permutation has always remained interdicted I use this word deliberately.

Thus it has always been thought that the center, which is by definition unique, constituted that very thing within a structure which governs the structure, while escaping structurality.

This is why classical thought concerning structure could say that the center is, paradoxically, within the structure and outside it. The center is at the center of the totality, and yet, since the center does not belong to the totality is not part of the totality , the totality has its center elsewhere.

The center is not the center. The concept of centered structure-although it represents coherence itself, the condition of the episteme as philosophy or science-is contradictorily coherent. And, as always, coherence in contradiction expresses the force of a desire. The concept of centered structure is in fact the concept of a freeplay based on a fundamental ground, a freeplay which is constituted upon a fundamental immobility and a reassuring certitude, which is itself beyond the reach of the freeplay.

With this certitude anxiety can be mastered, for anxiety is invariably the result of a certain mode of being implicated in the game, of being caught by the game, of being as it were from the very beginning at stake in the game. This is why one could perhaps say that the movement of any archeology, like that of any eschatology, is an accomplice of this reduction of the structuralality of structure and always attempts to conceive of structure from the basis of a full presence which is out of play.

If this is so, the whole history of the concept of structure, before the rupture I spoke of, must be thought of as a series of substitutions of center for center, as a linked chain of determinations of the center. Successively, and in a regulated fashion, the center receives different forms or names.

The history of metaphysics, like the history of the West, is the history of these metaphors and metonymies. Its matrix-if you will pardon me for demonstrating so little and for being so elliptical in order to bring me more quickly to my principal theme-is the determination of being as presence in all the senses of this word.

It would be possible to show that all the names related to fundamentals, to principles, or to the I center have always designated the constant of a presence- eidos, arche, telos, energeia, ousia essence, existence, substance, subject aletheia [truth], transcendentality, consciousness, or conscience, God, man, and so forth.

The event I called a rupture, the disruption alluded to at the beginning of this paper, would presumably have come about when the structurality of structure had to begin to be thought, that is to say, repeated, and this is why I said that this disruption was repetition in all of the senses of this word.

From then on it became necessary to think the law which governed, as it were, the desire for the center in the constitution of structure and the process of signification prescribing its displacements and its substitutions for this law of the central presence-but a central presence which was never itself, which has always already been transported outside itself in its surrogate. The surrogate does not substitute itself for anything which has somehow pre-existed it.

From then on it was probably necessary to begin to think that there was no center, that the center could not be thought in the form of a beingpresent, that the center had no natural locus, that it was not a fixed locus but a function, a sort of non-locus in which an infinite number of sign-substitutions came into play.

This moment was that in which language invaded the universal problematic; that in which, in the absence of a center or origin, everything became discourse-provided we can agree on this word-that is to say, when everything became a system where the central signified, the original or transcendental signified, is never absolutely present outside a system of differences.

The absence of the transcendental signified extends the domain and the interplay of signification ad infinitum. Where and how does this decentering, this notion of the structurality of structure, occur? It would be somewhat naive to refer to an event, a doctrine, or an author in order to designate this occurrence. It is no doubt part of the totality of an era, our own, but still it has already begun to proclaim itself and begun to work.

Nevertheless, if I wished to give some sort of indication by choosing one or two "names," and by recalling those authors in whose discourses this occurrence has most nearly maintained its most radical formulation, I would probably cite the Nietzschean critique of metaphysics, the critique of the concepts of being and truth, for which were substituted the concepts of play, interpretation, and sign sign without truth present ; the Freudian critique of self-presence, that is, the critique of consciousness, of the subject, of self-identity and of self-proximity or self-possession; and, more radically, the Heideggerean destruction of metaphysics, of onto-theology, of the determination of being as presence.

But all these destructive discourses and all their analogues are trapped in a sort of circle. This circle is unique. It describes the form of the relationship between the history of metaphysics and the destruction of the history of metaphysics. There is no sense in doing without the concepts of metaphysics in order to attack metaphysics.

We have no language-no syntax and no lexicon-which is alien to this history; we cannot utter a single destructive proposition which has not already slipped into the form, the logic, and the implicit postulations of precisely what it seeks to contest. To pick out one example from many: the metaphysics of presence is attacked with the help of the concept of the sign.

But from the moment anyone wishes this to show, as I suggested a moment ago, that there is no transcendental or privileged signified and that the domain or the interplay of signification has, henceforth, no limit, he ought to extend his refusal to the concept and to the word sign itself-which is precisely what cannot be done.

For the signification "sign" has always been comprehended and determined, in its sense, as sign-of, signifier referring to a signified, signifier different from its signified. If one erases the radical difference between signifier and signified, it is the word signifier itself which ought to be abandoned as a metaphysical concept. When Levi-Strauss says in the preface to The Raw and the Cooked that he has "sought to transcend the opposition between the sensible and the intelligible by placing [himself] from the very beginning at the level of signs," the necessity, the force, and the legitimacy of his act cannot make us forget that the concept of the sign cannot in itself surpass or bypass this opposition between the sensible and the intelligible.

The concept of the sign is determined by this opposition: through and throughout the totality of its history and by its system. But we cannot do without the concept of the sign, we cannot give up this metaphysical complicity without also giving up the critique we are directing against this complicity, without the risk of erasing difference [altogether] in the self-identity of a signified reducing into itself its signifier, or, what amounts to the same thing, simply expelling it outside itself.

For there are two heterogenous ways of erasing the difference between the signifier and the signified: one, the classic way, consists in reducing or deriving the signifier, that is to say, ultimately in submitting the sign to thought; the other, the one we are using here against the first one, consists in putting into question the system in which the preceding reduction functioned: first and foremost, the opposition between the sensible and the intelligible.

The paradox is that the metaphysical reduction of the sign needed the opposition it was reducing. The opposition is part of the system, along with the reduction.

And what I am saying here about the sign can be extended to all the concepts and all the sentences of metaphysics, in particular to the discourse on "structure. They are all more or less naive, more or less empirical, more or less systematic, more or less close to the formulation or even to the formalization of this circle.

It is these differences which explain the multiplicity of destructive discourses and the disagreement between those who make them. It was within concepts inherited from metaphysics that Nietzsche, Freud, and Heidegger worked, for example. Since these concepts are not elements or atoms and since they are taken from a syntax and a system, every particular borrowing drags along with it the whole of metaphysics. This is what allows these destroyers to destroy each other reciprocally-for example, Heidegger considering Nietzsche, with as much lucidity and rigor as bad faith and misconstruction, as the last metaphysician, the last "Platonist.

And today no exercise is more widespread. What is the relevance of this formal schema when we turn to what are called the "human sciences"? One of them perhaps occupies a privileged place-ethnology. One can in fact assume that ethnology could have been born as a science only at the moment when a de-centenng had come about: at the moment when European culture-and, in consequence, the history of metaphysics and of its concepts-had been dislocated, driven from its locus, and forced to stop considering itself as the culture of reference.

This moment is not first and foremost a moment of philosophical or scientific discourse, it is also a moment which is political, economic, technical, and so forth. One can say in total assurance that there is nothing fortuitous about the fact that the critique of ethnocentrism-the very condition of ethnology-should be systematically and historically contemporaneous with the destruction of the history of metaphysics. Both belong to a single and same era. Ethnology-like any science-comes about within the element of discourse.

And it is primarily a European science employing traditional concepts, however much it may struggle against them. Consequently, whether he wants to or not-and this does not depend on a decision on his part-the ethnologist accepts into his discourse the premises of ethnocentrism at the very moment when he is employed in denouncing them This necessity is irreducible; it is not a historical contingency.

We ought to consider very carefully all its implications. But if nobody can escape this necessity, and if no one is therefore responsible for giving in to it, however little, this does not mean that all the ways of giving in to it are of an equal pertinence. The quality and the fecundity of a discourse are perhaps measured by the critical rigor with which this relationship to the history of metaphysics and to inherited concepts is thought.

Here it is a question of a critical relationship to the language of the human sciences and a question of a critical responsibility of the discourse.

It is a question of putting expressly and systematically the problem of a discourse which borrows from a heritage the resources necessary of that heritage itself. A problem of economy and strategy. If I now go on to employ an examination of the texts of Levi-Strauss as an example, it is not only because of the privilege accorded to ethnology among the human sciences, nor yet because the thought of Levi-Strauss weighs heavily on the contemporary theoretical situation.

It is above all because a certain choice has made itself evident in the work of Levi-Strauss and because a certain doctrine has been elaborated there, and precisely in a more or less explicit manner , in relation to this critique of language and to this critical language in the human sciences. In order to follow this movement in the text of Levi-Strauss, let me choose as one guiding thread among others the oppostion between nature and culture.

In spite of all its rejuvenations and its disguises, this opposition is congenital to philosophy. It is even older than Plato. It is at least as old as the Sophists. From thebeginnings of his quest and from his first book , The Elementary Structures of Kinship , Levi-Strauss has felt at one and the same time the necessity of utilizing this opposition and the impossibility of making it acceptable.

In the Elementary Structures , he begins from this axiom or definition: that belongs to nature which is universal and spontaneous, not depending on any particular culture or on any determinate norm. That belongs to culture, on the other hand, which depends on a system of norms regulating society and is therefore capable of varying from one social structure to another.

These two definitions are of the traditional type. This scandal is the incest-prohibition. The incest-prohibition is universal; in this sense one could call it natural. But it is also a prohibition, a system of norms and interdicts; in this sense one could call it cultural. Let us assume therefore that everything universal in man derives from the order of nature and is charactenzed by spontaneity, that everything which is subject to a norm belongs to culture and presents the attributes of the relative and the particular.

We then find ourselves confronted by a fact, or rather an ensemble of facts, which, in the light of the preceding definitions, is not far from appeanog as a scandal: the prohibition of incest presents without the least equivocation, and indissolubly linked together, the two characteristics in which we recognized the contradictory attributes of two exclusive orders.

The prohibition of incest constitutes a rule, but a rule, alone of all the social rules, which possesses at the same time a universal character. Obviously, there is no scandal except in the interior of a system of concepts sanctioning the difference between nature and culture.

In beginning his work with the factum of the incest-prohibition, Levi-Strauss thus puts himself in a position entailing that this difference, which has always been assumed to be self-evident, becomes obliterated or disputed. The incest-prohibition is no longer a scandal one meets with or comes up against in the domain of traditional concepts; it is something which escapes these concepts and certainly precedes them--probably as the condition of their possibility.

I have dealt too cursorily with this example, only one among so many others, but the example nevertheless reveals that language bears within itself the necessity of its own critique. This critique may be undertaken along two tracks, in two "manners.

This is a first action. Such a systematic and historic questioning would be neither a philological nor a philosophical action in the classic sense of these words. Concerning oneself with the founding concepts of the whole history of philosophy, de-constituting them, is not to undertake the task of the philologist or of the classic historian of philosophy.

In spite of appearances, it is probably the most daring way of making the beginnings of a step outside of philosophy. The step "outside philosophy" is much more difficult to conceive than is generally imagined by those who think they made it long ago with cavalier ease, and who are in general swallowed up in metaphysics by the whole body of the discourse that they claim to have disengaged from it.

Jacques Derrida

The first impulse a reader is likely to have upon starting to read chapter 10 is to close the book in dismay and disgust. The sentences appear to become increasingly entangled, to lead nowhere, and ultimately to add up to nothing. My own comments are presented as questions or are in parenthesis. His focus is directed inward, at the workings of our minds, away from the objects our minds are supposed to interpret. The quote already prepares the reader for a self-conscious, torturously abstract reading. Why is this a problem?

Yesterday I started trying to record a "Close Reading" on the Derrida essay we read for the podcast , and I just couldn't get more than a few sentences into it before losing patience, so I thought I'd either as a substitution for that effort or possibly a warm-up do a few posts dissecting the essay here. I want this to be group effort, so you folks should comment here to help out my interpretations. Perhaps something has occurred in the history of the concept of structure that could be called an "event," if this loaded word did not entail a meaning which it is precisely the function of structural-or structuralist-thought to reduce or to suspect. But let me use the term "event" anyway, employing it with caution and as if in quotation marks. In this sense, this event will have the exterior form of a rupture and a redoubling. It would be easy enough to show that the concept of structure and even the word "structure" itself are as old as the episteme -that is to say, as old as western science and western philosophy-and that their roots thrust deep into the soil of ordinary language, into whose deepest recesses the episteme plunges to gather them together once more, making them part of itself in a metaphorical displacement.

While we are building a new and improved webshop, please click below to purchase this content via our partner CCC and their Rightfind service. You will need to register with a RightFind account to finalise the purchase. Objective Semiotica is published in six annual issues, in two languages English and French , and occasionally in German. From time to time, Special Issues, devoted to topics of particular interest, are assembled by Guest Editors. The publishers of Semiotica offer an annual prize, the Mouton d'Or, to the author of the best article each year. The article is selected by an independent international jury.

Derrida’s “Structure, Sign, and Play in the Discourse of the Human Sciences” Dissection, Part I

Perhaps something has occurred in the history of the concept of structure that could be called an "event," if this loaded word did not entail a meaning which it is precisely the function of structural-or structuralist-thought to reduce or to suspect. But let me use the term "event" anyway, employing it with caution and as if in quotation marks. In this sense, this event will have the exterior form of a rupture and a redoubling.

It became widespread also in legal studies, especially through the Critical Legal Studies movement in the United States and their equivalents in the UK — movements that were also indebted to actualized versions of Marxism and concerned with the demands of subaltern groups such as women, ethnical minorities and LGBT. It has, therefore, some degree of institutional reception in those fields. Against that hypothesis, we would argue, first, that, as some in our opinion, more rigorous readers of Derrida have argued cf.

Structure, Sign, and Play in the Discourse of the Human Sciences French : La structure, le signe et le jeu dans le discours des sciences humaines was a lecture presented at Johns Hopkins University on 21 October by philosopher Jacques Derrida. Although presented at a conference intended to popularize structuralism, the lecture is widely cited as the starting point for post-structuralism in the United States. Along with Derrida's longer text Of Grammatology , it is also programmatic for the process of deconstruction. Many attendees came from France, and spoke French during the event; French lectures were translated into English and distributed in print.

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Испания отнюдь не криптографический центр мира. Никто даже не заподозрит, что эти буквы что-то означают. К тому же если пароль стандартный, из шестидесяти четырех знаков, то даже при свете дня никто их не прочтет, а если и прочтет, то не запомнит. - И Танкадо отдал это кольцо совершенно незнакомому человеку за мгновение до смерти? - с недоумением спросила Сьюзан.  - Почему.

У нее оставалось целых пять часов до рейса, и она сказала, что попытается отмыть руку. - Меган? - позвал он и постучал. Никто не ответил, и Беккер толкнул дверь.  - Здесь есть кто-нибудь? - Он вошел. Похоже, никого. Пожав плечами, он подошел к раковине. Раковина была очень грязной, но вода оказалась холодной, и это было приятно.

ГЛАВА 82 Когда мысль о последствиях звонка Стратмора в службу безопасности дошла до сознания Грега Хейла, его окатила парализующая волна паники. Агенты сейчас будут. Сьюзан попробовала выскользнуть из его рук, Хейл очнулся и притянул ее к себе за талию. - Отпусти меня! - крикнула она, и ее голос эхом разнесся под куполом шифровалки. Мозг Хейла лихорадочно работал.

Окажись дома. Через пять гудков он услышал ее голос. - Здравствуйте, Это Сьюзан Флетчер. Извините, меня нет дома, но если вы оставите свое сообщение… Беккер выслушал все до конца. Где же .

Derrida, Structure, Sign and Play

Она смотрела на него с недоумением. - Надеюсь, это не уловка с целью заставить меня скинуть платье.

Мидж задумалась. - Может. - Может .

EDU - ЕТ? - спросила Сьюзан. У нее кружилась голова.  - Энсей Танкадо и есть Северная Дакота.

Jacques Derrida's

Но Чатрукьян отказывался прислушаться к голосу разума. У нас вирус. Я звоню Джаббе.

Я чувствую. Ведь я слишком много знаю. - Успокойся, Грег.

Сегодняшний день стал для него днем сплошных фиаско. То, что началось как в высшей степени патриотическая миссия, самым неожиданным образом вышло из-под контроля. Коммандер был вынужден принимать невероятные решения, совершать чудовищные поступки, на которые, как ему казалось раньше, не был способен. Это единственное решение. Единственное, что остается.

Derrida, Structure, Sign and Play
2 Response
  1. Teapucanma

    Jacques Derrida,. “Structure, Sign, and Play in the Discourse of the Human Sciences”. 1. (). Perhaps something has occurred in the history of the concept of.

  2. Nick178

    But even more than the re-conception of difference, and perhaps more importantly, deconstruction attempts to render justice.

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