Reading and Responsibility: Deconstruction's Traces (The Frontiers of Theory)
- Publish Date: 2010-05-27
- Binding: Hardcover
- Author: Derek Attridge
What is the importance of deconstruction, and the writing of Jacques Derrida in particular, for literary criticism today? Derek Attridge argues that the challenge of Derrida's work for our understanding of literature and its value has still not been fully met, and in this book, which traces a close engagement with Derrida's writing over two decades and reflects an interest in that work going back a further two decades, shows how that work can illuminate a variety of topics.Chapters include an overview of deconstruction as a critical practice today, discussions of the secret, postcolonialism, ethics, literary criticism, jargon, fiction, and photography, and responses to the theoretical writing of Emmanuel Levinas, Roland Barthes, and J. Hillis Miller. Also included is a discussion of the recent reading of Derrida's philosophy as 'radical atheism', and the book ends with a conversation on deconstruction and place with the theorist and critic Jean-Michel Rabat.Running throughout is a concern with the question of responsibility, as exemplified in Derrida's own readings of literary and philosophical texts: responsibility to the work being read, responsibility to the protocols of rational argument, and responsibility to the reader.