Posted by: Rajesh Shukla | May 1, 2010

Deconstruction is always already contained within the very architecture of the work

Deconstruction has been explicitly constructed by Derrida as an attempt to shake totality, to make it tremble in its entirety. Derrida’s undertaking to be viewed as’ broaching the deconstruction of THE GREATEST TOTALITY and logocentric metaphysics, insofar as that totality is constituted by the value of the system. Yet this critique of the limits of totalization does not proceed by means of a classical refutation, which judges totalization impossible on account of man’s infinitude. “One then refers to the empirical endeavor of either a subject or a finite discourse in a vain and breathless quest of an infinite richness it can never master. There is too much, more than any one can say.”-Derrida..This classical rejection of totalization underlines the romantic theology of fragment. Derrida outlines a different objection to the possibility of totalization. “Nontotalization can also be determined in another way: no longer from standpoint of a concept of finitude as relegation to the empirical, but from the stand point of the concept of play. If totalization no longer has any meaning, it is not because the infiniteness of a field can not be covered by a finite glance or a finite discourse, but the nature of the field –that is, language –excludes totalization. This field is in effect that of play, that is to say, a field of infinite substitutions only because it is finite, that is to say, because instead of being and exhaustible field, as in the classical hypothesis, instead of being too large, there is something missing from it: a center which arrests and grounds the play of substitution. (D)” ..but this deconstructive interpretation of totality and system at the benefit and in perspective of the nontotalization field of the infrastructure, does not preclude all systematicity. The deconstructive doing of the GREAT TOTALITY, the totality of onto-theology , faithfully repeats this totality in its totality while simultaneously making it tremble, making it insecure in its most assured evidences. This mimicry of totality and of the pretension to systematicity is an inseparable element of deconstruction, one of the very conditions of finding its foothold within the logic being deconstructed.

—( The train of mirror-Rodolphe Gasché)

‘The very condition of a deconstruction may be at work in the work, within the system to be deconstructed. It may already be located there, already at work. Not at the center, but in an eccentric center, in a corner whose eccentricity assures the solid concentration of the system, participating in the construction of what it, at the same time, threatens to deconstruct. One might then be inclined to reach this conclusion: deconstruction is not an operation that supervenes afterwards, from the outside, one fine day. It is always already at work in the work. Since the destructive force of Deconstruction is always already contained within the very architecture of the work, all one would finally have to do to be able to deconstruct, given this always already, is to do memory work. Yet since I want neither to accept nor to reject a conclusion formulated in precisely these terms, let us leave this question suspended for the moment.’

–Artwork titled , Lot’s Wife by Sam Weber


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