Mentor: Kevin Boyle
Project title: Joyce, Pound, and Beckett: High Modernism and the Intersection at Dante
I presented my paper “‘The time is out of joint’: A Dialectical Hauntology of Justice in Specters of Marx,” written alongside and in relation to themes in my thesis work, at the Derrida Konferenz in Frankfurt, Germany, and I presented an abridged version of this paper at Elon’s SURF.
In his Specters of Marx, a book comprising several lectures given in 1991 at a symposium on the fall of the Soviet Union, Derrida responds specifically to Francis Fukuyama's declaration that the liberal democracy represents the end of political history, that we have finally overcome the various forms of totalitarianism which include Marxism. Derrida's neologism "hauntology" denotes the presence of otherness in any instance of identity formation or, as Derrida uses it in this more explicitly political context, the inability of liberal democracies to exorcize from themselves the specter of Marxism. In my paper, I interpret Derrida's notion of "hauntology" as a kind of productive paradox that discourages espousal of complacent ideological positions like that of Fukuyama, and I develop this claim as a response to the theoretical discourse that has over the past two decades decried Derrida as apolitical or nihilistic. The work of philosopher G.W.F. Hegel, and especially his conception of the dialectic, allowed me to bring to light political aspects of Derrida's project that have hitherto been overlooked.
Dr. Ann J. Cahill
Professor of Philosophy
Spence Pavilion 111
2340 Campus Box
Elon, NC 27244
Phone: (336) 278-5703
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