, Volume 21, Issue 1, pp 1-16

Allergologies Versus Homeopathies

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Abstract

This paper is a reconstruction of Levinas’ reading of Hegel and his understanding of violence (of the enemy and the war). Combining Franz Rosenzweig’s reflections which concern the sick philosopher and Hegel’s state, as well as Derrida’s interpretation of the different attributes of violence, our aim is also to give full evidence of Derrida’s critical reading of Levinas. The first part illustrates the various classifications of the figures of violence from the different periods of Hegel’s life and the traces that these figures have left in Levinas’ texts beginning with ‘Liberté et commandement’ in 1953. In the second part we discuss Hegel’s well-known analogy from his Rechtsphilosophie on sovereignty and the organism—that is to say the parallel reading of some paragraphs of Naturphilosophie too—and the relation between totality and violence, in Levinas’ ‘ontology as allergy’ and in Derrida’s autoimmunology.