Deconstruction and the Postcolonial

  • Robert J. C. Young


‘I do not believe that anyone can detect by reading, if I do not myself declare it, that I am a “French Algerian”’ (Derrida, 1998, p. 46). True, for when I wrote White Mythologies, I knew that you had been born in Algeria, in the very year that had witnessed the celebrations of the centenary of the French invasion. (Something for Algerians to celebrate indeed.) You had once guardedly spoken of your childhood memories, your ‘nostalgeria’, far more briefly though than Cixous had recalled her ‘Algeriance’ (Derrida, 1985; Cixous, 1998). That was, however, my only lead, apart from when I had first seen you in 1979 and understood immediately that you were no ‘français de souche’. What a relief. No blockhead, at least. All the same, even before that moment I already knew that something serious was going on. It was as plain as punch even if I found it impossible then to identify where it was coming from. What was certain was that it was somewhere else, and that it was producing a strong effect of disorientation (for which read ‘disoccidentation’).


Jewish Community Western Philosophy Double Intention Postcolonial Theory French Culture 
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Copyright information

© Robert J. C. Young 2000

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  • Robert J. C. Young

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