Jacques Derrida’s Structure, Sign, and Play is one of the most controversial and influential philosophical texts of the 20th century. Delivered at a conference on structuralism at Johns Hopkins, the lecture took aim at the critical and philosophical fashions of the time and radically proposing a world in which meaning cannot be pinned down or traced to an origin, but instead is continuously shifting, fleeting, and open to play. Hailed by many as a watershed in philosophy and literary theory, Derrida’s lecture has shaped both disciplines. At once dense, brilliant, and humorous, it is a crucial read for anyone interested in questioning our natural assumptions about meaning in the world.
Table of Contents
Ways in to the text
Who was Jacques Derrida?
What does Structure Sign and Play in the Discourse of Human Science say?
Why does Structure Sign and Play in the Discourse of Human Science matter?
Section 1: Influences
Module 1: The Author and the Historical Context
Module 2: Academic Context
Module 3: The Problem
Module 4: The Author's Contribution
Section 2: Ideas
Module 5: Main Ideas
Module 6: Secondary Ideas
Module 7: Achievement
Module 8: Place in the Author's Work
Section 3: Impact
Module 9: The First Responses
Module 10: The Evolving Debate
Module 11: Impact and Influence Today
Module 12: Where Next?
Glossary of Terms
People Mentioned in the Text
Dr Tim Smith-Laing took his DPhil in English literature at Merton College, Oxford, and has held positions at Jesus College, Oxford, and Sciences Po in Paris.