Saturday, September 16, 2006

Wacko Jacko

A mate of mine studied Philosophy a few years ago and so he has collected a little library containing works of most of the philosophical hot shots of the previous century. So I take one of Derrida's books (I forgot the title, but it isn't too important for what I'm about to say) from the shelves. I open it on a random page and there I read: "The History of God is a scatology."

Afterwards I was - and am still - thinking: "Putting aside the fact that this undoubtedly very wisely deduced and wrought sentence should be understood into its proper context and even given the fact that Jacques Derrida may have introduced a few enriching methodologies and/or terminologies into recent philosophical history, how can I ever again take this man seriously?"

Indeed, how far strayed from the original meaning and intention of philosophy must one find himself to conclude such an improbable and, frankly, quite ridiculous dictum out of the history of Man looking at his God? How can one be expected (given that this sentence is not the conclusion but the premise, the starting point of one of Derrida's lectures) to put any faith into the deductory powers of such a man?

A few pages of this kind of nonsense would have made even an insomniac as notorious as Cioran fall asleep at night.


Martijn said...

Now I'm sort of intrigued how Derrida arrived at that assumption...

Fire in the Mind said...

makes you wonder, hey ;-)

OMC said...

I'm with Martijn, it has been on & off my mind since I read yr post. :)

Other than that it obviously is unfair to judge a text, let alone, a whole body of work, on one randomly picked sentence. But you know that. ;)

I do tend to fall asleep reading JD though (the one text of his I really really love though is 'Plato's Pharmacy').