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The Gift and the Meaning-Giving Subject: A Reading of Given Time

  • Jacques de Ville
Chapter

Abstract

In this essay the relation between justice and the gift in Derrida’s thinking is explored. The essay shows that an understanding of the ontological difference or the relation between Being and beings in Heidegger’s thinking as well as Freud’s speculations on the death drive are essential to comprehend the “concept” or “notion” of différance as well as the gift in Derrida’s thinking. The analysis points to the complexity of Derrida’s thinking in his contemplation of the relation between justice and law and the need for a broader investigation to understand what is at stake in this regard. An exploration of the gift shows that Derrida’s thinking on justice is not “relativistic” as is often assumed and that the gift can in a certain way function as a “guide” in questions of constitutional interpretation.

Keywords

Circular Economy Ontological Difference Constitutional Interpretation Death Drive Circular Exchange 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Notes

Acknowledgement

The author would like to acknowledge the generous funding provided for the research by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation and the South African National Research Foundation.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of the Western CapeCape TownSouth Africa

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