This note accompanies the follow episode(s):
The Writer’s Almanac for July 15, 2017: Trying to Pray

July 15, 2017: birthday: Jacques Derrida

And it’s the birthday of French philosopher Jacques Derrida (books by this author), the founder of “deconstruction,” was born on this day in El Biar, Algeria (1930). Derrida generally refused to define “deconstruction.” When asked to do so once in an interview he said, “It is impossible to respond. I can only do something which will leave me unsatisfied.” One time when giving a lecture he said, “Needless to say, one more time, deconstruction, if there is such a thing, takes place as the experience of the impossible.”

He’s the author of more than 40 notoriously dense books, including Of Grammatology (1976), Specters of Marx (1993), Of Spirit (1989), Resistances of Psychoanalysis (1998), and The Animal That Therefore I Am (2008).

Derrida’s most famous words: “There is nothing outside the text.”