By Jacques Derrida
This quantity comprises the speech given via Derrida at Emmanuel Levinas's funeral on December 27, 1995, and his contribution to a colloquium equipped to mark the 1st anniversary of Levinas's dying. For either thinkers, the observe adieu names a basic attribute of man or woman: the salutation or benediction ahead of all constative language (in sure situations, you can actually say adieu in the intervening time of assembly) and that given in the interim of separation, occasionally without end, as in the interim of loss of life, it's also the a-dieu, for God or to God prior to and in any relation to the opposite.
In this ebook, Derrida extends his paintings on Levinas in formerly unexplored instructions through a thorough rereading of Totality and Infinity and different texts, together with the lesser-known talmudic readings. He argues that Levinas, in particular in Totality and Infinity, bequeaths to us an "immense treatise of hospitality," a meditation at the welcome provided to the opposite. The conjunction of an ethics of natural prescription with the belief of an enormous and absolute hospitality confronts us with the main urgent political, juridical, and institutional issues of our time. What, then, is an ethics and what's a politics of hospitality? And what, if it ever is, will be a hospitality surpassing any ethics and any politics we know?
As constantly, Derrida increases those questions within the such a lot specific of phrases, relocating backward and forward among philosophical argument and the political dialogue of immigration legislation, peace, the country of Israel, xenophobia—reminding us with each movement that pondering isn't really a question of neutralizing abstraction, yet a gesture of hospitality for what occurs and nonetheless might ensue.
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Additional info for Adieu to Emmanuel Levinas
Which passes before the other? . The other and the third, my neighbors, con temporaries of one another, put distance between me and the other and the third. "Peace, peace to the neighbor and �he one far-off" (Isaiah 57: 19)-we now understand the point of this apparent rhetoric. The third introduces a con tradiction in the Saying. . It is of itself the limit of re sponsibility and the birth of the question: What do I have to do with justice? A question of conscience, of consciousness. Justice is necessary, that is, comparison, coexistence, con temporaneousness, assembling .
4 If I felt I had to accept the great and undue honor of delivering these first words, it was also-something more difficult to admit-because I felt myself incapable of preparing for today a lecture worthy of the name, worthy of this conference, and worthy of Levinas. When Danielle Cohen-Levinas extended me this honor, I agreed to be the first to speak so as, of course, to take part in this homage, something I deeply wished to do, but also so as to efface A Word of Welcome 19 myself as quickly as possible on the threshold of hospital ity.
Beyond this appearance or convenience, a return to the conditions of responsibility and of the decision would im pose itsel£ between ethics, law, and politics. Such a return might be undertaken, as I will try to suggest in conclu sion, according to two very close, but perhaps heteroge neous, paths. I Has anyone ever noticed? Although the word is neither frequently used nor emphasized within it, Totality and In finity bequeaths to us an immense treatise of hospitality. This is borne out less by the occurrences of the word "hospitality,-" which are, in fact, rather rare, than by the links and discursive logic that lead to this vocabulary of hospitality.
Adieu to Emmanuel Levinas by Jacques Derrida