Pseudology: Derrida on Arendt and Lying in Politics

Jay, Martin Pseudology: Derrida on Arendt and Lying in Politics. [Articles (Articoli)]

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In l993, Jacques Derrida was invited to participate in a lecture series at the New School dedicated to the memory of Hannah Arendt, who was closely associated with the school during much of her American exile. As far as I know, the talk that resulted was the only sustained attempt by Derrida to address and draw on Arendt’s work. Entitled “History of the Lie: Prolegomena,” it was published in several places, most recently in the collection edited by Peggy Kamuf called Without Alibi. The texts he discusses at length are Arendt’s essays of l967 and l971, “Truth in Politics” and “”Lying in Politics: Reflections on the Pentagon Papers.” Derrida masterfully situates Arendt’s reflections in a long tradition of philosophical ruminations on lying, which he calls “pseudology.” Plato’s Hippias Minor, Augustine’s De mendacio and Contra mendacium, Montaigne’s “On Liars,” Rousseau’s Reveries of the Solitary Walker, Kant’s “On the Supposed Right to Lie Because of Philanthropic Concerns,” even Alexandre Koyré’s “The Political Function of the Modern Lie” are all brought to bear on the crucial questions raised by Arendt: what is the role of lying in politics and does that role have a history?

Item Type: Articles (Articoli)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Derrida, Arendt, Lying
Subjects: P Philosophy
Depositing User: Unnamed user with email
Date Deposited: 04 Sep 2008 11:09
Last Modified: 04 Sep 2008 11:12

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