Jacques Derrida Quotes

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Jacques Derrida
Born Jackie Élie Derrida[1]
(1930-07-15)July 15, 1930
El Biar, French Algeria
Died October 9, 2004(2004-10-09) (aged 74)[2]
Paris, France[2]
Alma mater École Normale Supérieure[3]
BA; MA (1954);
Dr. cand. (1957))
Harvard University
(1956–57; postgrad. studies)
University of Paris
(DrE, 1980)
Spouse(s) Marguerite Aucouturier
Era 20th-century philosophy
Region Western philosophy
School Continental philosophy
Radical hermeneutics[4]
Institutions University of Paris
École Normale Supérieure
École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales
Collège international de philosophie
European Graduate School
University of California, Irvine
Notable ideas
Deconstruction Â· Différance Â· Phallogocentrism Â· Free play Â· Archi-writing Â· Metaphysics of presence Â· Invagination

I wrote some bad poetry that I published in North African journals, but even as I withdrew into this reading, I also led the life of a kind of young hooligan.
Jacques Derrida
The first problem of the media is posed by what does not get translated, or even published in the dominant political languages.
Jacques Derrida
I have always had trouble recognizing myself in the features of the intellectual playing his political role according to the screenplay that you are familiar with and whose heritage deserves to be questioned.
Jacques Derrida
These critics organize and practice in my case a sort of obsessive personality cult which philosophers should know how to question and above all, to moderate.
Jacques Derrida
As soon as there is language, generality has entered the scene.
The boarding-school experience in Paris was very hard, I didn't put up with it very well. I was sick all the time, or in any case frail, on the edge of a nervous breakdown.
Jacques Derrida
Why is it the philosopher who is expected to be easier and not some scientist who is even more inaccessible?
Jacques Derrida
The circle of the return to birth can only remain open, but this is a chance, a sign of life, and a wound.
Jacques Derrida
Still today, I cannot cross the threshold of a teaching institution without physical symptoms, in my chest and my stomach, of discomfort or anxiety. And yet I have never left school.
Jacques Derrida
I have always had school sickness, as others have seasickness. I cried when it was time to go back to school long after I was old enough to be ashamed of such behavior.
Jacques Derrida
I do not believe in pure idioms. I think there is naturally a desire, for whoever speaks or writes, to sign in an idiomatic, irreplaceable manner.
Jacques Derrida
I never give in to the temptation to be difficult just for the sake of being difficult. That would be too ridiculous.
Jacques Derrida
I became the stage for the great argument between Nietzsche and Rousseau. I was the extra ready to take on all the roles.
Jacques Derrida
Who ever said that one was born just once?
My most resolute opponents believe that I am too visible, that I am a little too alive, that my name echoes too much in the texts which they nevertheless claim to be inaccessible.
Jacques Derrida
To pretend, I actually do the thing: I have therefore only pretended to pretend.
Jacques Derrida
Whatever precautions you take so the photograph will look like this or that, there comes a moment when the photograph surprises you. It is the other's gaze that wins out and decides.
Jacques Derrida
Everything is arranged so that it be this way, this is what is called culture.
Jacques Derrida
No one gets angry at a mathematician or a physicist whom he or she doesn't understand, or at someone who speaks a foreign language, but rather at someone who tampers with your own language.
Jacques Derrida
Certain readers resented me when they could no longer recognize their territory, their institution.
Jacques Derrida
If this work seems so threatening, this is because it isn't simply eccentric or strange, but competent, rigorously argued, and carrying conviction.
Jacques Derrida
Every discourse, even a poetic or oracular sentence, carries with it a system of rules for producing analogous things and thus an outline of methodology.
Jacques Derrida
These years of the Ecole Normale were an ordeal. Nothing was handed to me on the first try.
Jacques Derrida
In philosophy, you have to reckon with the implicit level of an accumulated reserve, and thus with a very great number of relays, with the shared responsibility of these relays.
Jacques Derrida
In Algeria, I had begun to get into literature and philosophy. I dreamed of writing-and already models were instructing the dream, a certain language governed it.
Jacques Derrida
We are all mediators, translators.
I do everything I think possible or acceptable to escape from this trap.