So I think one of the questions Derrida may be arriving at in an essay of his questioning and celebrating work by Emanuel Levinas (is it just me or is that a particularly beautiful name?) is to query why words mean what they mean: why is the word duck a feathered water bird; why is creator God. I’m ten pages away from completing a perusal of this essay by JD. It’s been both dull and engaging, utterly difficult to discern and incisively sinuous.
I’m nowhere near even a thoroughly rudimentary comprehension, but can this billow, this veil, this rending, this rendering, this shimmer in flakes as they fall and refresh, ever conjoin such a total moment as I declare comprehension, which might be one way of saying I can’t confidently provide even one illustrative quotation, and to cite several and argue their connection is more work than I’m willing to accomplish.
When I look at the scene cast by my reflection, my sense drapes Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway and To The Lighthouse in shimmering webs like spider weavings as well as clouds. Webs makes for, ironically, relatively easy philological departure to nets, meshes, “language grill” according to one translation of the Celan. And, ah lovely logic, the webs I drape here and there across Virginia’s pages are in fact nets she has conjured, enwrapped me in.
Now that an hour and a half has elapsed, I’ve completed a perusal. It’s taken me several days but, finally, I have glanced at each word on all sixty or so pages of Jacque’s essay. I think it has been worthwhile.