Composition Displacement

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:
Composition Displacement

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This chapter interrogates two sets of terms, two notions, or two practices that are deployed across Derrida's great essay ‘Plato's Pharmacy’ – the terms/notions/practices of composition and displacement. Beyond this proposal to isolate and read a few fragments of ‘Plato's Pharmacy’, it also attempts to gather enough momentum from this selective reading to execute a leap beyond that essay and land closer to the other end of Derrida's oeuvre, traversing thereby what is now often referred to as the division between his early and late work. The point of the exercise is to bring to bear at least one or two more reasons to resist such narratives and to be wary of the figural substitution of chronology or biography for an entirely different ‘logic’ that does not necessarily unfold according to the commonly referenced temporal order.

Keywords: Derrida; Plato's Pharmacy; composition; displacement

Chapter.  9570 words. 

Subjects: Literary Theory and Cultural Studies

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