“Tape-Recorded Surprise”: Derrida Interviewed

Peggy Kamuf

in To Follow

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9780748641543
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748652136 | DOI:
“Tape-Recorded Surprise”: Derrida Interviewed

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This chapter relies on fairly standard, conventional markers of the interview to make some initial remarks about Derrida's practice of that genre or mode. From the first, this practice has called the conventions of the interview into question and has rarely missed an opportunity to remark on them or to make apparent the constraints that are usually left outside the frame of such printed exchanges. This is perhaps the most constant feature of Derrida's interviews: the remarking of framing devices within the frame, the retracing of the interview's conditions within the space those conditions make possible but also, of course, constrain and limit. There is thus almost always in Derrida's interviews an explicit meta-interview in which the interviewee switches the machine's gears or rather points to the gears of the interview mechanism that is usually kept out of sight, whirring offstage, like the two reels of a tape recorder.

Keywords: interviews; Jacques Derrida; philosophers; meta-interview

Chapter.  5983 words. 

Subjects: Literary Theory and Cultural Studies

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