The Confusion of Text
Jacques Derrida is a modernist philosopher in addition to criticizing the ideas of utter revelatory and theories of modern philosophers. Often, modern philosophers favor logocentrism, differentiate and disagree with Derrida. He thinks that the first concept will always be valid after the idea is just an addendum if it is impossible. It is showing if the truth is absolute but singular. Like the concept of totality and essence, discussing Derrida understands the confusion and also a debate.
Derrida offers an idea that is entirely different and problematic from the pictures of the previous philosophers. Through deconstruction, he finds meaning in a text, not just bringing back the text’s original meaning or seeing the text as a whole, as many modern philosophers say.
The Infinity of Text
Jacques Derrida offers a way to understand the utter revelatory of the text; one cannot continue to maintain the old or existing purpose. It is a must in determining the essence, and then we must glorify it. However, in understanding, it must obtain a truth utterly new in its description. It gets to the truth without losing the truth or meaning of the past. Once people find out the facts, it cannot legitimately state whether it is the absolute truth.
An interpreted text is infinite. Therefore, there is no need to conclude that Derrida considers the fact to be neither singular nor absolute. Therefore, the meaning comes from the text that the writer does not even think about. The truth obtained is not the only truth but a new opportunity to seek the truth to infinity.
Derrida and Deconstruction
Jacques Derrida was born in Algeria on July 15, 1930. His parents (named Haïm Aaron Prosper Charles Derrida and Georgette Sultana Esther Safar) married in 1923 and moved to St. Petersburg. In 1949, he moved to France. Apart from living until the end of his life, he taught at the École Normale Supérieure in Paris. Augustine in Algeria in 1925. That same year, Rene Derrida (Haïm and Georgette’s son) was born, and four years later, Paul Derrida (Rene’s younger brother) was born.
However, three months later, Paul died. In 1930, Jackie Derrida was born and later called himself “Jacques.” Derrida is of Jewish descent. On October 9, 2004, Mr. He died at the age of 74 from cancer. Since 1774, Derrida has been actively involved in the activities of the philosophy lecturer association. They are fighting for a fair place for philosophy at the high school level called Le Groupe de Recherches sur l’Enseignement Philosophique (GREPH) or the Research Group on Teaching Philosophy.
This group was founded when planning to reform education in the framework of philosophy in secondary schools began to be debated. He wrote many articles in these publications, such as Qui a peur de la philosophie? or Who’s Afraid of Philosophy? in 1977. Almost all of Derrida’s works were written as comments by other authors such as Ferdinand de Saussure and Sigmund Freud.
Binary: True or False
The commentary is in a particular form, because in this way, the thinking itself develops step by step. He does not simply give an interpretation but also does not limit himself to studying the presuppositions and implications of a text. He presented a new text by commenting on texts and compiled a text by “dismantling” other readers. Thus, he tries to go beyond the textbooks by saying an assumption that is not told in such text.
It is called deconstruction, a flow of uncovering how cause and effect, whether true or false, does not have a binary. In essence, Derrida’s thought was motivated by the phenomenology and ontology of Martin Heidegger. In connection with this theory emerged because of the criticism of Saussurean; Saussure formulated his theory through two binary oppositions such as large and small, oral and written, good and bad.
In the Saussurean, the former is always primary while the latter is always marginal. Saussure analogized this by stating that if he finds meaning through the speech and taste of the word, it shows if he underestimates writing and prioritizes addressing.
The Critique of Logocentrism
Jacques Derrida is interested in criticizing modern philosophy because it is synonymous with the metaphysical view of logocentrism and utter revelatory. Metaphysics of presence explains that a concept or theory will be justified when it represents “being.” “Being” can be represented by words or signs. The term deconstruction has been applied to Derrida since he gave a lecture in America in an article.
His thinking is also not unique in terms of deconstruction. If we look at the development of French and German philosophy, many philosophers have talked about deconstruction. Friedrich Nietzsche is one of many names. Derrida said that philosophy always tends to look for a term for concrete units. In other words, philosophy is looking for the meaning of the unity of various things.
Jacques Derrida offers an interesting opinion on the truth. Apart from criticizing the logocentrism tradition in European philosophy, Derrida thinks that logocentrism is a misunderstanding. He tries to go beyond logocentrism by looking at the other side of reality, namely the side of deconstruction. For Derrida, the fact is always related to the process of analysis, not absolute and fixed, but moving in line with changes in reality itself.
Language and symbols can never represent reality other than being ambiguous and uncertain. It is always in a text and is in the form of uncertainty, obscures the meaning of the text, and is open to various possible interpretations. The text does not only mean writing but also reality itself.
Royle: the Word
Talking about deconstruction is easy but very complex for many people. Defining or formulating the etymology of deconstruction is very difficult. There are various definitions of deconstruction, one of which is Nicholas Royle. By definition: deconstruction is not what many people think; experience will be impossible, a way of thinking to shake what is considered established, what makes identity, not an identity, and the future does not yet exist itself.
According to Jacques Derrida, utter revelatory is not a way or a method. In French, the word “pas” means “not.” However, it turns out that “pas” is also a “method.” It means that deconstruction is neither a method nor a step. What does it mean? The deconstruction method sees truth only as a trail where humans cannot understand absolute truth in themselves. They can only reach the traces of the truth and only approach the truth without ever being able to wholly or entirely get it.
In this sense, every atom of truth is always uncertain and open. They can change according to changes, always available to questions and objections until other possibilities arise. Therefore, people view truth as an interpretation in which it reinterprets itself continuously without stopping. At one point, deconstruction moves beyond itself and invites many people to enter the realm before the word.
McQuillan: the Reader
According to Martin McQuillan, there are five strategies for understanding deconstruction.
- Deconstruction means an event of reading which affects as a method by repeating the same way.
- Deconstruction means the contamination of binary oppositions like body and soul, black and white, big and small, day and night, and male and female. Binary opposition means a hegemony of meaning from one pole, and the other pole becomes marginal. On the one hand, there is dominance, while on the other hand, there is periphery. Binary antinomies in the series and their nature have one side, hegemonic and marginal. For McQuillan, deconstruction proceeds in two stages. The first stage is to let the dominance of one side then try to emphasize the opponent’s side. The second stage is to remove the binary antinomy because emphasizing the opposite pole cannot be maintained consistently.
- Deconstruction means that it can be explained as a reading process, interested in the edges like scribbles on a wall. In the context of binary opposition, marginalization in binary opposition is in demand.
- Deconstruction means history, favored in binary oppositions, is unstable and constructs itself from history.
- Deconstruction means no free text. The meaning of the text refers to a series of traces, namely, the situation or context in the text itself gives a sense.
The Hermeneutic of Deconstruction
As radical hermeneutics, many philosophers have characterized deconstruction as a constant change of perspective so that people cannot always decide on meaning. For example, there is a readable text. Other definitions have emerged and are ready to invalidate the reader’s interpretation. Canceling the reader’s understanding because the meaning will appear means that another meaning will appear and will continue to be like that if people take that meaning.
The case is that a writer and literature teacher debate the importance of curtain color in a text based on their respective interpretations. A deconstructed reader will not answer as to what the text means. However, it is only going to be able to say there is a meaning in specific details. Truth is neither one nor absolute. It is multi plural in nature where everyone can get a more different and deeper meaning.
It does not mean that truth is relative. However, deconstruction wants to invite many people to be open to the truths that arise or arise. Therefore, there are always other unforeseen possibilities. Deconstruction invites to bring up a twist and a new meaning, trying to question the existing intentions so that the unexpected sense emerges.
- Derrida, J. (2010). Deconstruction. CORE.
- Longxi, Z. (1985). The “Tao” and the “Logos”: Notes on Derrida’s Critique of Logocentrism. Critical Inquiry, 11(3), 385-398.
- McQuillan, M. (2001). Deconstruction: A reader. Taylor & Francis.
- Royle, N. (2003). Jacques Derrida. Routledge.