Acts of Literature

Front Cover
Psychology Press, 1992 - Literary Criticism - 456 pages
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Acts of Literature, compiled in close association with Derrida, brings together a number of Derrida's writings on literary texts on the question of literature. These writings discuss literary figures such as Rousseau, Mallarme, Joyce, Shakespeare and Kafka. Comprising pieces spanning Derrida's career, the collection includes a substantial new interview with him on questions of literature, deconstruction, politics, feminism and history. Derek Attridge provides an introductory essay on deconstruction and the question of literature, and offers suggestions for further reading. These essays examine the place and function of literature in Western culture, and provide original responses to individual literary texts. They highlight Derrida's interest in literature as a significant cultural institution and as a peculiarly challenging form of writing, with inescapable consequences for our thinking about philosophy, politics and ethics.
 

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Contents

Derrida and the Questioning of
1
That Dangerous Supplement
76
Mallarme no 4 The First Session
127
Before the Law
181
The Law of Genre
221
Hear Say Yes in Joyce
253
Invention of the Other
310
from Signsponge
344
For Paul Celan
370
Aphorism Countertime
414
A Selected Bibliography of Derridas Writing
435
Index
443
Copyright

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About the author (1992)

Jacques Derrida was born in El-Biar, Algeria on July 15, 1930. He graduated from the École Normal Supérieure in 1956. He taught philosophy and logic at both the University of Paris and the École Normal Supérieure for around 30 years. His works of philosophy and linguistics form the basis of the school of criticism known as deconstruction. This theory states that language is an inadequate method to give an unambiguous definition of a work, as the meaning of text can differ depending on reader, time, and context. During his lifetime, he wrote more than 40 books on various aspects of deconstruction including Of Grammatology, Glas, The Postcard: From Socrates to Freud and Beyond, and Ulysses Gramophone: Hear Say Yes in Joyce. He died of pancreatic cancer on October 9, 2004 at the age of 74.

Derek Attridge is Professor of English at the University of York.

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