Derrida and Hospitality: Theory and Practice by Judith Still

By Judith Still

Winner of the R. H. Gapper publication Prize 2011. Judith nonetheless units Derrida's paintings in a chain of contexts together with the socio-political historical past of France, specifically with regards to Algeria, and his courting to different writers, most significantly Hélène Cixous, Luce Irigaray and Emmanuel Levinas - key thinkers of hospitality. nonetheless additionally follows the thread of sexual distinction in Derrida's writing so one can make clear his exploration of the complicated and mild, unusual but well-known, political and moral dilemmas of the way to be these most unlikely issues, a very good host and a very good guest.Hospitality is significantly vital in Derrida's writings, and his insights during this were influential throughout quite a number disciplines from geography, politics and sociology to literary stories and philosophy. It services as a manner of either puzzling over family members among members, and analysing the neighborhood or state's frequently inhospitable reception of outsiders, similar to refugees or migrants.

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Derrida and Hospitality: Theory and Practice

Winner of the R. H. Gapper booklet Prize 2011. Judith nonetheless units Derrida's paintings in a sequence of contexts together with the socio-political background of France, particularly on the subject of Algeria, and his courting to different writers, most significantly Hélène Cixous, Luce Irigaray and Emmanuel Levinas - key thinkers of hospitality.

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I should like to say a little more here about the French context, and why the language of hospitality might be appropriate for the public and political domain in France in a way that is less obvious elsewhere. France can and does (like other nations) draw on many traditions to inform its deployment of the language of hospitality. I am using the term ‘tradition’ as a ‘portmanteau’ to cover historical reality, cultural memory, myth and so on. Examples of diverse traditions important for hospitality include tales of the Greeks, Romans, Arabs, and the Hebrews as narrated in the Bible, distant ethnographic reports and local rural practices (including notably Corsica).

51 More recently these debates have inevitably been overshadowed in the press by the aftermath of 9/11, the invasion of Afghanistan and then the Iraq war. However, it is still possible to find passionate articles about the spirit and laws of hospitality occasioned by any attempt by the French State to criminalise hospitable behaviour. I shall take just two examples, the first relating to Corsica. Corsica is a region particularly rich in its tradition and myth of hospitality; the arrest of Frédéric Paoli, shepherd and town councillor, for giving shelter to a Corsican nationalist accused of murder in 2003 gave rise to a series of demonstrations and articles in the press around the theme ‘hospitality is not a crime’.

112; Emmanuel Lévinas, Autrement qu’être ou au-delà de l’essence (The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff, 1978), p. 142. The reader has to struggle with the question whether these two phrases contradict each other, inform each other (both relating to the subject’s fundamental responsibility for the other), or apply in different circumstances. For Derrida’s analysis, see Adieu (pp. 55; 102–3). 12. Caren Kaplan, amongst many others whom she cites (many less judicious than herself), attacks contemporary theory and other cultural artefacts that use notions of travel or mobility or the nomad in an ahistorical and universalised fashion, the most famous example being Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari’s ‘deterritorialisation’.

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