A Note on a Post Card: Derrida, Deronda, Deguy



In this essay I am concerned with pursuing an ‘amateur reading’ of a post card. Or two. This is not so much a reading; rather it should be considered more as an extended amatory note, un ècrit naïf, a naive writing (JD 1993, 8/4),1 for reasons which will reveal themselves. A note on a postcard then, and a note about a note on a post card. There is also a concern here, albeit a concern approached obliquely, with that desire we all know too well, the desire to ‘know’ Jacques Derrida, to know who he is, to comprehend his identity, through those texts that are signed in his name, as though the signature and identity were the same; and the desire to search out identity through the academic-doxical game of seeking out those seemingly ‘autobiographical’ post cards and fragments which some of us would like to believe Derrida is sending in his texts. Did I call this desire? Obsession is a better term. And, lastly, I am concerned with love: sending love, addressing love, naming love, thinking about love as that which undoes both the promise of, and obsession with, a stable identity. Love, which Derrida — or someone called Derrida — sends and discusses often enough in The Post Card, and frustrates identity itself. The frustration of identity is often marked by the play with identity that is set in motion by the proper name and the ‘figure’, the event of love, which figure or event, as Nicholas Royle suggests, is a ‘condition of any deconstructive reading’ (Royle 1995, 56).


Good Reader Jewish Identity Quotation Mark Double Reading Stable Identity 
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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1996

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