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Review: "In the Name of Reason": The Deconstruction of Sovereignty

Reviewed Work(s): Rogues: Two Essays on Reason by Jacques Derrida, Pascale-Anne Brault
and Michael Naas
Review by: Rodolphe Gasch
Source: Research in Phenomenology, Vol. 34 (2004), pp. 289-303
Published by: Brill
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/24654847
Accessed: 27-07-2017 10:21 UTC

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"In the Name of Reason": The Deconst


Jacques Derrida. Rogues: Two Essays on Re
Brault & Michael Naas. Stanford: Stanford

In the age of so-called globalization, that i


and intensification of commercial, informatio
beyond national boundaries, the sovereignty
in Europe until the seventeenth century has b
The sovereign rule of the nation-states over a
something that can be taken for granted. A
the nation-states themselves becomes questio
has argued, the structural changes of the worl
are jeopardizing the integrity of the bord
within which the peoples of the state can c
well-defined 'self' [ein wohlbestimmtes 'Selbst'
the state's sovereignty and monopoly on st
intact, the growing interdependences of a w
basic premise that national politics, circum
nate national territory, is still adequate to
individual nation-states" (PC, 70; transl. mod
these states qua states of peoples, that is, n
selves up over the course of the nineteenth ce
of legitimation, the threat by globalization
siderably reduces the state's ability of self-
influencing itself, and working on, or acting u
Indeed, the global markets have forced the
their international competitiveness, and thus s
by cutting away on their ability to be the
legislation (Selbstgesetzgebung). To remain comp
the nation-states have come under the p
restrictions (Selbstbeschrnkung) on their powe
Such adaptation to the conditions of a tr
undermines, in particular, the historical co
the European nation-states to shield their su
sired social and political consequences of
whelmed by the global economy, the prev
order to catch up politically with the force
further relinquish parts of their sovereign
political alliances, and thus joining supranat

Research in Phenomenology, 34
KoninMijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands 20

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However, the loss of the nation-state's "w


as of the possibility of self-acting and self
the ability to freely shape itself in a worl
is not simply negative. It also provides opp
of greater political unities is no longer lim
adaptation of new circumstances with the
position in the global markets. According
ing interdependence of the actors in supra
possibility of "influenc[ing] the overall con
itself, and to set a course for a democrati
state" (PC, 53). Although globalization seve
(insofar as politics is a function of the na
has, therefore, also led to the belief of th
about the possibility of a new kind of po
themselves up "internally to the multiplicity
of cultural life," and "externally, in relati
the nation-states face the challenge of cre
from a collective identity beyond national
legitimacy conditions for a postnational demo
the postmodern claim that "politics as such
of the nation-state," Habermas advocates "
with global markets, one that will be abl
locational competition . . . [whose] basis of
in the organizational forms of an interna
which already exist today in other politic
"renewed political closure" that internati
such as, for instance, the European Union
when the classical world of states fades,
chistic openness, is, for Habermas, the fo
itics beyond the nation-state. Indeed, this
forms for the democratic self-steering of so
Within The Postnational Constellation, the r
of the nation-state, and the purported right
such a statea right that Habermas quali
is primarily, if not exclusively, attributed to
(PC, 72). The disintegration of the soverei
in historical, social, and economic terms.
democratic politics based on larger politica
European Union, is also modeled primaril
cessful forms of social integration" througho

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modernity, and especially, in the wake of "


Europe during the last century (PC, 103). H
critique of sovereignty is restricted to the
hood of nation-states and is, hence, an issu
modernity. This assessment is essentially of
political or historical-juridical account a
Habermas' critique of sovereignty in moder
authority" that modernity retains, that is,
in principle, of a philosophical nature, philo
must finally, "cede the ongoing task of inte
social theory" (PC, 13031). And, indeed, the e
subtitle is "Political Essays," tackle the issue
parameters of socio-political thought alone.
disappearance of the sovereign nation-state
tently relying on concepts such as "self," ac
legitimation, that is, terms whose nature
sociological, or political, but philosophical
concerned with the structures by which so
into being. As a consequence, that which p
of an autonomous self to relinquish its iden
to others, that which allows reason to become
to overcome its own historical limitations
sophical questions that Habermas' socio-polit
sovereignty in postmodernity must leave un
In the article co-signed with Habermas, "
dem Krieg: Die Wiedergeburt Europas," publishe
Leitung, Derrida stresses the basic premisse
shares with Habermas about the European
national context and, more generally, abou
also transform international law and its inst
observes that Habermas' suggestions over
reflections advanced in his new work, Rogu
Indeed, in this work, now available in the
Pascale-Anne Brault and Michael Naas, Derr
of sovereignty in the context of what he term
is a philosophical concept referring to the g
world), arguing that the concept of the nat
thus unshareable, undergoes today "an even
(V, 212).3 Like Habermas, Derrida, in Rogues
of the distribution of the powers of the st

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world dominated by one superpower. He


effectively expand international right and
Given the confrontations that in the past
Derrida and Habermas, the similarities be
regarding the analysis of the political challen
constellation, and indeed the identity of the
striking. However, the strategic reasons t
Habermas' rapprochement in the post-Sep
ing European responsibility in face of Am
way efface the fundamental differences betw
I would hold that the shared premisses an
marily, if not exclusively, socio-political an
tical suggestions regarding a postnational
analyses of sovereignty reach well beyond
understanding that this concept enjoyed in
in Rogues, is not only discussed as part of
lems that include those of "reason," "dem
cially, the "event," it is, above all, a ph
inquires into precisely those questions tha
and juridical inquiries do not address. It is
into these notions that not only differs f
style, but it is above all an inquiry that requi
tication and conceptual rigor that is not e
Let me emphasize, from the start, that D
problem of sovereignty in this new work
philosophical reason. The deconstructive t
itself undergoes as a result of its encounte
ereignty in Rogues, not only reaches back
selfhood and self-legitimation (which for e
ereignty), but also lays the ground for un
occidental rationalism is capable of openin
the first place. Undoubtedly, Habermas ac
rationalism has the advantage of gaining "s
traditions, to broaden limited perspectives
tering of our ways of viewing things" (PC
not derived, as in Derrida, from the inne
and authority of reason. Indeed, this inquir
of sovereignty and its aporetic nature put
autonomy that continues to undergird all

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provides illuminating insights into the end


national constellation.

In Roguesin particular, in the part devoted to exploring the mean


ing of Kant's expression, "to save the honor of reason"Derrida avers
that deconstruction, which rather than abandoning the Enlightenment
remains faithful to its memory, follows in essence from an "exigency
of reason." Indeed, the "deconstructive exigency of reason" is a cri
tique of reason itself in the name of reason. Deconstruction, Derrida
writes, is "an unconditional rationalism that never renouncesand pre
cisely in the name of the Enlightenment to come, in the space to be
opened up of a democracy to comesuspending in an argued, delib
erated, rational fashion, all conditions, hypotheses, conventions, and
presuppositions, and criticizing unconditionally all conditionalities, includ
ing those that still found the critical idea, namely, those of the knnein,
of the krisis, of the binary or dialectical decision or judgment" (V, 197).
The rational deconstruction of sovereignty that Derrida pursues in this
latest work is intimately interconnected with a critique of reason that,
in the name of reason, recognizes sovereignty as, first of all, grounded
in the sovereignty of reason. Indeed, "sovereignty is first of all one of
the traits by which reason defines its own power and element, that is,
a certain unconditionality" (V, 211).
As Derrida recalls, throughout the history of reason in the West,
the rationality of reason is essentially double in that reason both signifies
an unconditional and incalculable principle, on the one hand, while
maintaining itself as a process of reasoning as rationalization, calcula
tionin short, as ratioon the other. Derrida's reading of Plato's
inquiry in the Republic into the dynamis of knowledge (i.e., the power
of knowledge and as knowledge), that is, into the idea of the Good,
argues that reason, as an absolute and unconditional principle, is sov
ereign. Indeed, Plato not only grants the idea of the Good the sover
eignty of a king that reigns over the intelligible visible world, he also
establishes the Good's power as a superpower since the Good is beyond
being and beingness. Derrida writes: "Besides basileus and kumn, the
words that Plato uses are those that will have named sovereignty in
the whole complicated, rich, and differential history of the political
onto-theology of sovereignty in the West. It is the super-powerful origin
of a reason that gives reason or proves right [dome raison], that wins out
over [a raison de] everything, that knows everything and lets everything
be known, that produces becoming or genesis but does not itself become,

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remaining withdrawn in an exemplary, hyp


ing or from genesis" (V, 192). From Plato'
ultimate sovereign power that orders, and
to Kant and Husserl, reason in the sense of
has been consistently given the status of
culative reason has to submit. This seemin
sovereignty and unconditionality (and henc
within the philosophical concept of reason
the history of the onto-theological politics
Derrida's rational deconstruction of reason. In the name of reason

itself, deconstruction seeks to dissociate sovereignty and uncondition


ality that are inextricably interlinked in the traditional, that is, the
metaphysical concept of reason. When Derrida asks "whether it is today
possible, in the daylight of today, to think and put to the test a sep
aration that seems impossible and unthinkable" (V, 196), it is, of course,
in light of "certain experiences"above all "September 11, 2001"
but also "and, more generally, through the experience that lets itself
be affected by what or who comes [fee) qui vient], by what happens or
by who happens by, by the other to come" (V, 13). Sought in the name
of the event, including the to-come and the be-coming of reason, the
demand for dissociating the indissociable relation between sovereignty
and unconditionality is one that, given the intrinsic link that Derrida
establishes in Rogues between the event and the incalculable and uncon
ditional, proves to be "faithful to one of the two poles of rationality,
namely, to this postulation of unconditionality" (V, 196).
By recognizing that the forces that shape the present world are "in
want of sovereignty [en mal de souverainete]sovereignty in general but,
more visibly, more decipherably, indivisible nation-state sovereignty"
(V, 196), and, furthermore, that such forces no longer ground a cal
culating reason that addresses programmable or anticipatable "events,"
Derrida's rendering of the question concerning a possible separation
of sovereignty and unconditionality, becomes more precise. He asks
whether we can and must "not distinguish, even when this appears
impossible, between, on the one hand, the compulsion or auto-positioning
of sovereignty (which is nothing less than that of ipseity itself, of the
selfsame of the oneself),. . . and, on the other hand, this postulation of
unconditionality, which can be found in the critical exigency as well as
in the (forgive the expression) deconstructive exigency of reason" (V, 196).
Indeed, if today's eventsand, in particular, September 11have
opened up a world without a horizon in which the worst may still be

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to come, then to save the honor of reason


of a reason to comethe indivisibility of sover
must be dissolved: one must even be questio
other, that is, sovereignty in the name of
writes: "This is what would have to be reco
through, however difficult or improbable, ho
might seem. Yet what is at issue is precisely
possible (of power, of the masterly and sov
itself) and of an im-possible that would not
privative (V, 197). In short, the honor of rea
possibility of such a deconstruction of sove
that extends to the position of ipseity in g
relation to itself.

To think through the im-possiblean im-


all, the condition of the event itself, an event b
if it cannot be predicted, in short, if from
ble reason it is strictly im-impossiblerath
tionalism, is required by reason itself. It is n
spell out the conditions under which alone t
for instance, is possible. When Derrida hold
only chance to think, rationally, something l
becoming [devenir\ of reason" (V, 199), the diffe
and that of Habermas, in spite of all the not
the political questions of sovereignty and de
into view. Indeed, if the event, for instance, is
its eventfulness requires that it occur without
and any teleological preformation while at
recognizable as an event. Without being calcu
refuse all knowledge, or rational calculation
the event or democracy, Derrida demonstrat
rather, aporetic, nature of the demands inte
characterizes them as im-possible. All of De
happens to democracy in the age of globaliz
onate with Habermas' socio-political diagnos
that reach back to the first articulation of these ideas in Plato and

Aristotle where they are intimately tied up with the essence of reason,
but are also foregrounded in the intricate web of aporetic demands
that structure the concepts that these analyses bring into view. In short,
the fundamental difference between Derrida's and Habermas' account

of what happens today in politics, and to the political institutions of

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the nation-state, is that Derrick's analyses of


take place against the background of, what
that is, the aporetic normative constraints
concept of democracy and that make dem
and an impossiblity. Furthermore, the promise
in democracy is "a promise that risks and
verted into a threat."4 Although Derrida has
thought a privilege in his previous writings,
and becomes further enriched in Rogues by th
that is, the implacable law that always tu
possible into a possible threatthat in the
racy is sovereignly abolished, to name just
As I have already pointed out, Derrida qu
exclusively in the shape of the autonomou
fundamentally in the shape of ipseity, autos,
He writes: "Before any sovereignty of the
the monarch, or, in democracy, of the peop
of legitimate sovereignty, the accredited o
power or force, a kratos or a cracy. That is
supposed, but also imposed in the very po
positioning, of ipseity itself, everywhere the
ultimate, and supreme source for every 're
right [droit] granted to force or the forc
(V, 31-32). The sovereignty of the nation-
the form of self-hood, but also that such
self-positing, and self-positioning. Indeed, th
is that in terms of possibility any democ
automobilic and autonomic turn or, rather
self and upon the self [whether it is a q
determination, of the auto-nomy of the self,
one-self that gives itself its own law, of al
self-relation as being in view of the self, beg
end of self in view," in short, "ipseity in
say, this turn by which a self returns to itse
the possibility of a turn against itself, tha
of autonomy. If the self can return to itself
it can in the same movement annihilate its
self-positioning of the self as oneself, and he
ity and autonomy not only of any self, whet
individuals, of nation-states, and even of

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(such as the United Nations), but also of


meaning of a concept itself (such as the co
lies all of Derrida's analyses of the sovereig
democracy within the limits of such auton
This, then, is also the moment to highlig
of auto-immunity so prevalent in this boo
auto-immunization refers to "this strange i
ing being can spontaneously destroy, in an
very thing within it that is supposed to prote
immunize it against the aggressive intrus
Derrida has not, as he remarks, privileged
excessive biologistic or geneticist proclivity
a scheme that imposed itself, when it b
requires a return to itself (or auto-affection),
time, the possibility of a turn against itse
rotary movement of the self's return to itsel
encounter with itself and countering of it
life (whether bios or zoe) insofar as life is
its others, such as the spirit, culture, or po
nity (which goes far beyond the biological
ism tends to destroy, in a suicidal fashion
tections), it is not some particular thing t
rather, first and foremost, "the self, the ipse
infected" (V, 154). Derrida writes that aut
only in harming or ruining oneself, indee
protections, and in doing so oneself, comm
ing to do so, but, more seriously still, and
ing the I [mot ] or the self [ soi ], the ego or
promising the immunity of the autos itse
compromising oneself [s'auto-entamer] but in
autosand thus ipseity. It consists not only
in compromising sui- or sef-rck rcn ti all ty, th
(V, 71). Such autoimmunal perversion oc
normal or normative perversions of auton
sphere. As Derrida suggests in a discussion
the beginning of the Vienna Lecture, Europ
objectivism, in other words, with a form o
reason itself. What is at issue here is "a tra
even a transcendental auto-immunity" (V,
transcendental phenomenological auto-imm

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according to Derrida, could be shown to b


ture of the present and of life, in the tem
called the Living Present (die lebendige Ge
Present is produced only by altering and d
is a clear indication not only of the term
the notion of auto-immunity is to be und
level on which the inquiry into the autos,
place. To argue that no autonomy of the
the circularity of self-affection, and that th
within oneself at once the possibility of a
transcendental questions. Derrida stresses,
cularity must be thought of as the rotund
that is "super-preliminary" (T, 30) not onl
physis and techne, thus not only to the thou
a wheel, but also prior to the purely geom
or the sphere, that is, of a constituted ide
affection and auto-immunity is, therefore, o
structural limits of autonomy that are o
tinctions and that concern structures of iM-
all possible ideality.
However, such limitation of auto-nomy
It is, first and foremost, the very conditio
happen at all. Derrida avers: "auto-immun
evil. It enables an exposure to the other, t
which means that it must remain incalculable. Without auto-immu
nity, with absolute immunity, nothing would ever happen or arrive;
we would no longer wait, await, or expect, no longer expect one
another, or expect any event" (V, 210). Insofar as auto-immunity
breaches the self's autonomy and sovereignty, it opens it up to the
otherto the event, that is, to what Derrida calls the uncalculable or
unconditional. With this question of the unpredictable coming of the
other (and thus of a heteronomy, or law of the other that includes
the responsibility and decision of the other), auto-immunity becomes
the condition of a democracy that is not based on autonomy (which
by welcoming only citizens, brothers and compeers excludes the others),
but is instead open to the excluded, the other, any other. Finally, auto
immunity, the turn of the self against itself, is what secures the possi
bility of self-critique, perfectibility, and thus the historicity of democ
racyin short, to what makes democracy so unique among all the
other political regimens.

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If the democracy of the One [demos) presupp


to self as the freedom and power [kratos) o
its own master, then democracy is intima
democracy, Derrida argues, is "a force [kra
a sovereign authority (sovereign, that is, k
power to decide, to be decisive, to prevail,
out over [avoir raison de] and to give force of
power and ipseity of the people [demos)" [
force more powerful than all other forces,
any division; it is unique and indivisible. S
acknowledged by all the theoreticians of sov
and Thomas Hobbes on to Carl Schmitt who links it to decisionist

exceptionality. This is also to say that, by not being in need of any


legitimation, "sovereignty withdraws . . . from language, which always
introduces a sharing that universalizes . .. The paradox, which is always
the same, is that sovereignty is incompatible with universality even
though it is called for by every concept of international, and thus uni
versal or universalizable, and thus democratic, law. There is no sov
ereignty without force, without the force of the strongest whose rea
sonthe reason of the strongestis to win out over [avoir raison de]
over everything" [V, 144). Furthermore, because sovereignty's force is
indivisible, absolute, and unconditional, the abuse of power is consti
tutive of sovereignty that as such betrays the very democracy (whether
national or international) that it inaugurates. In short, the very indi
visibility of sovereignty on which universalizable law rests contradicts
universality from within. But if, on the other hand, sovereignty is made
to justify itself by giving reasons for itself, sovereignty is subjected to
rules, a code of law, some general law, and thus deprived of its ground
ing function for a universalizable law. "It is thus to divide it, to sub
ject it to partitioning, to participation, to being shared. It is to take
into account the part played by sovereignty. And to take that part into
account is to compromise sovereignty's immunity, to turn it against
itself" [V, 144). Derrida's deconstruction of sovereignty, which bases
itself as much on a sharpening of the classical and canonical aporias
of democracy that Aristotle already pointed atthe aporia between
freedom and equalityas on an analysis of the role of the interna
tional organizations (and above all the sovereign power of the United
States in the post-September 11 context), highlights the aporetic struc
ture of the concept. Unlike Giorgio Agamben (who in attempting to
provide a general theory of sovereignty argues that the notion of a

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state of exception is aporetic only because


defined, and seeks to overcome the aporias
concept of this notion), Derrida highlights
eignty.5 However, distinct from a merely ne
account points to "negative and affirmati
ensue [from the principle of sovereignty],
tion of possibility and impossibility of res
the backdrop of the aporias of democrati
ity toward the democratic thus becomes m
is led to conceive of, and work towards, a
an unconditionality without sovereignty.
While not opposing "head on, all sovereignty
without threatening at the same time, bey
of sovereignty, the classical principles of f
tion" (F, 216), Rogues is at the same time
ing the state form, which should, as Derr
day, no longer be the last word of the pol
democracy without sovereignty, in other
Such dissociation between democracy and
that is, admittedly, "im-possible," i.e., fore
sible), is made in the name of another trut
into the rotatory movement by which a s
at the same undone is an investigation int
ular axiomatic of a certain democracy, na
to self of the circle and the sphere, and th
the autos of autonomy, symmetry, homogene
or the similar, and even, finally, God, in o
remains incompatible with, even clashes w
democratic, namely, the truth of the other, h
and the dissymmetric, disseminal multiplicity
the 'no matter who,' the indeterminate 'eac
that is open to the other becomes possible
immunity of the autonomous self to its ow
that even though it clashes with autonomy
in the circular process by which autonomy
with. As we have seen, such auto-immunity
racy to be a system, the exclusive one,
assumes for oneself the right to criticize ever
the idea of democracy, its concept, its hist
the idea of the constitutional paradigm and

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law. It is thus the only paradigm that is u


chance and its fragility" (V, 127). In short,
autos by itself, which opens up democracy
as well as to the possibility of self-improve
only political regime that, in the name of a
to and seek assent from every one.
If sovereignty, then, is to be deconstruct
(and is, as such, also the deconstruction of cla
to meet the exigency of unconditionality. In
self or nation-state must open itself up to i
nomy, is the other, the event, and the fut
possible to which Derrida associates "incalculabl
since "without the absolute singularity of the
tional, no thing and no one, nothing other an
happens" (V, 203). This then is also the poi
sible to elicit more clearly what Derrida, i
plish. Rather than seeking to plunge reaso
stood, into the abyss of the irrational, by d
the metaphysical concept of reason is bro
aporias, and that means nothing less than i
cisely the sovereignty that constitutes reason
meeting its responsibilities. Grounded in sover
against itself in the auto-immunitary process
of letting the unconditional comethe oth
and thus also to account for (in the form
tion) what is incalcaluble, unconditional, a
a question of surrendering calculation in t
tionality of reason (nor the unconditional to w
writes: "According to a transaction that is
without precedent, reason goes through an
side, the reasoned exigency of calculation
the other, the intransigent, non-negotiable
incalculability. This intractable exigency wins
win out over everything. On both sides, th
of singularity or universality, and each tim
lation and the incalculable are necessary" (V
tionality of reason, each singularity is to be r
in the name of "a universal beyond all rel
centrism, and especially nationalism" ( V, 204)
however hypothetical and problematic, "is

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stakes of reason," Derrida remarks (F, 172


is said to be woven into "the entire destiny
world universality to come" (F, 168). Yet,
toward both the singular and the univers
sibilities, implicated in the concept of reas
"within the auto-immunitary aporia of th
between the conditional and the uncondit
incalculable" (F, 208). For this always pe
proposes the term "reasonable," rather than
into account the incalculable "so as to gi
where this appears impossible, so as to acco
that is to say, with the event of what or w
of saving the honor of reason (F, 217).
In an elaborate discussion of democracy in P
shows that there exists in ancient Greece no p
meaning of democracy, that is, no concep
democracy properly speaking. Everything
about freedom and political behavior, as eit
to be master of oneself) or exousia (licens
Derrida, "a freedom of play, an opening o
cidability in the very concept of democracy,
democratic" (F, 47). This freedom in the co
freedom, in advance of the difference be
functions "as the empty opening of a future
of the language of democracy." The essent
cept of democracy, the possibility of wha
racy to come" is thus opened up. This n
come" extends the democratic beyond the n
citizenship, including world-citizenship. It
is, by right, "to all non-human living bei
that, to all the non-living, to their memor
their to-come or to their indifference wit
we can identify, in an always precipitous,
as the life or the living present of living \la
As Derrida remarks, to speak of a "dem
invoke a current, determinate, and limite
does not refer to a democracy in the futu
be present, or something that in the present
time. Instead, it is an injunction and an u
present itself. "The to-come of democracy

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REVIEW ARTICLES 303

presence, the hie and nunc of urgency, of


urgency" (V, 53). Although the "democracy
that one day in the future could be a prese
fore, an idea in the Kantian sense. A regula
explains, the idea of something possible ev
deferred. "As for 'democracy to come,' it a
(V, 131). It is always to come. But though
since its aporetic structure inhibits it from
as such, it remains the heritage of a promi
ditional urgency, the "democracy to come
now, the memory of that which alone carr

Rodolphe Gasche
State University of New Yor

NOTES

1. Jrgen Habermas, The Postnational Constellation. Political Essays, trans. . Pensky


(Cambridge, : MIT Press, 2001); hereafter cited as PC.
2. Jacques Derrida and Jrgen Habermas, "Unsere Erneuerung. Nach dem Krieg: Di
Wiedergeburt Europas," Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, May 31, 2003, p. 33.
3. All quotes from Rogues are from the forthcoming translation by Pascale-Anne Brauk
and Michael Naas, but the page references are to the French original: Jacques
Derrida, Voyous. Deux essais sur la raison (Paris: Galilee, 2003); hereafter cited as V.
4. "Autoimmunity: Real and Symbolic Suicides. A Dialogue with Jacques Derrida," in
Giovanna Borradori, Philosophy in a Time of Terror. Dialogues with Jrgen Habemas and
Jacques Derrida (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2003), 120.
5. Giorgio Agamben, Homo Sacer. II, 1, Etat d'exception, trans. J. Gayraud (Paris: Editions
du Seuil, 2003).
6. "Autoimmunity; Real and Symbolic Suicides," 131.

Of Origins and Ends

Leonard Lawlor. Derrida and Husserl: The Basic Problem of Phenomenology


Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2002. 286pp.

The first detailed and comprehensive examination of all of Derrida's


major writings on Husserl, Leonard Lawlor's Deirida and Husserl is a
genuine labor of explication and close reading, meticulously unpack
ing and elucidating works that 40 or 50 years after their publication
still prove forbiddingly difficult. Yet, Lawlor has not shirked from tack
ling all the complexities inherent in these texts; his book is a model

Research in Phenomenology, 34
Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands 2004

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All use subject to http://about.jstor.org/terms