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Deconstructing DignityA Critique of the Right-to-Die Debate$
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Scott Cutler Shershow

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780226088129

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226088266.001.0001

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Methodological Introduction: A Strategy and Protocol of Deconstruction

Methodological Introduction: A Strategy and Protocol of Deconstruction

(p.1) Chapter One Methodological Introduction: A Strategy and Protocol of Deconstruction
Deconstructing Dignity

Scott Cutler Shershow

University of Chicago Press

This chapter surveys the texts of Jacques Derrida to outline a kind of deconstructive “method.” Deconstruction, which is fundamentally a thought of time and mortality, and a commitment to the endless interrogation of philosophic axioms and norms, is as such uniquely qualified as a way to approach both ancient and modern debates about a right to die. Deconstruction follows an “adventurous strategy,” a kind of protocol that does not, however, precede the discourse it governs, in order to reveal how philosophic debates are constituted in terms of a “violent hierarchy” of two opposed terms. Deconstructive thought first inverts these terms, and then shows how such inversion displaces the original hierarchy, allowing for the irruptive emergence of a new quasi-concept — and a way to think otherwise about the question at issue.

Keywords:   Jacques Derrida, Deconstruction, Sovereignty, Walter Benjamin, Justice

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