Re: CT on Derrida for Daniel

From: James Rovira <>
Date: Mon Jan 06 2003 - 15:10:35 EST

I think you're making a few mistaken assumptions about modern
philosophy. There are major philosophical figures that are decidedly
anti-rational, that argue pretty coherently just what you're saying.
 You can't lump all modern philosophy, then, into a rationalist's
framework. These anti rationalists are also the ones that lead us,
often, to notice the gaps in language (or the next generation after them
did so). Language is our vehicle for rationality; if you acknowledge
the limits of reason, you acknowledge the limits of language as well.

What you recognize as a fault in Lewis is his recognition of the truths
you're trying to espouse here. See what he said about the limitations
of Reason (personified as a Virgin) in _Pilgrim's Regress_.


Yocum Daniel GS 21 CES/CEOE wrote:

>That's just it, human experience is not exclusively rational, now I love
>seeing rational characterizations of things and I think they are real but it
>is only part of the story and there is the irrational side that the 'modern'
>philosophers are blind to or afraid of. It is not all tame-able. It is
>irrational to rationalize the irrational. That's one reason why we tell
>stories. Myth does have truth that the philosophers are unequipped at
>mining. They can try all they want but I won't shut my mouth. Rationalize
>'Catcher in the Rye' and well it lays sagging in your hands like a wet
>Thanks for the link. Richard Rorty has also popped up quite a bit lately in
>my getting to the bottom of this Derrida stuff.
>Yah, Lewis isn't perfect. All this discussion reminds of my little girl,
>she is often more fascinated with the packaging then the contents. I know
>it is not always easy to tell the difference and I can hate the contents but
>admire the packaging sometimes. I think that was a Lewis trait as well.
>But the hate or love is actually based on the content not the packaging and
>it appears that Derrida was saying this but of course it came wrapped up in
>a lot of packaging and he said a bunch of other junk too.
>From: James Rovira
>Here's the article I mentioned before, Daniel. The guy does a pretty
>good job describing Derrida's thought to the limited extent that he does it:
>It's interesting that the article you posted earlier, about C.S. Lewis,
>points out how he anticipated many of the more "radical" ideas that came
>after him. I've always understood him to be a reader-response kind of
>person, one that grounds the meaning of literary texts within an
>interpretive community (so not just the author). The important point to
>gain from all of this is the recognition that these seemingly repulsive
>theories are the natural end products of the western rhetorical
>tradition. You can't get anyone more squarely, conservatively in the
>middle of it than Lewis, yet look what he believed...
>If you read the link I posted above carefully, I think you'll see
>Richard Rorty is the real bad boy (in the sense of the death of meaning)
>of academia, not Derrida. I tend to agree. I can't stand his reading
>of Heidegger.
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Received on Mon Jan 6 15:18:26 2003

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