Posted at 10.13.2018
Derrida's article "Personal Event Framework" was first delivered by means of a spoken discussion newspaper in Montreal in 1971 on the theme of "Communication", and published in the beginning as an essay as part of the discussion' Proceedings. The 'framework' of Derrida's article is relevant in relation to the theme of the paper itself. In its first form, a spoken article 'preformed' or 'produced' in the France language, the article (now in its written British form), discusses the value and variations of 'framework' in both the written terminology and in conversation.
The essay was then printed in 1988 in Graff's collection Limited Inc. , which outlined the variations between Anglo-American and European-Continental on the theoretical debate on literary analysis. The historical context of the article is pertinent to the themes or templates of original meaning and context which can be reviewed within the article. Derrida discusses the distinction between your nature of fact and terms, and he presents arguments on the privileging of spoken words, which is deemed to be 'better' to the loudspeaker and in that way the intended so this means; whereas written words receive a secondary position and the meaning is derived by the understanding of the listener.
Derrida examines this is of 'framework', and then the significance of 'framework' with regards to other factors encircling a text message, such as events, discourses and signature. He argues these issues all factor into the meaning of the text as it is produced by the copy writer or speaker, and then understood by the listener or reader.
Derrida begins the essay in a discourse on the nature and explanation of "Communication", when Derrida state governments:
one must to begin with ask oneself set up expression or signifier 'communication' communicates a determinate content, an identifiable so this means, or a describable value. (Derrida 1).
The phrase or signifier communication occurs double, in the proclaimed form "communication", and again as the verb form "communicates". For the reader the utilization of the term in this manner signifies a question which must be explored in the written text of the essay. For Derrida this is a rhetorical question. As viewers and as a writer getting close to the text, if the word "communication" got a particular or indisputable so this means, there would be no dependence on a discourse or essay about them. That is typical of Derrida's stylistic procedure in the rhetorical questioning which occurs throughout the text of the article.
The article is then organised into three areas talking about the factors stated in the title "Signature Event Context", and Derrida uses instances from other theorists to be able to provide his arguments for each element. Inside the first section on "Writing and Communication" Derrida looks at the arguments of Condillac's article because it :
has an explicit representation on the foundation and function of the written wordingwhich organizes itself here within the philosophical discourse that, in cases like this and throughout school of thought, presupposes the simplicity of the origin, the continuity of all derivation, of most production, of most analysis, and the homogeneity of all dimensions [purchases]. (Derrida 4)
In using Condillac Derrida is delivering the philosophical ideas on theories of writing from a traditional theoretical point of view, whereby writing is used as presenting the initial ideas of the copy writer and all contributing factors to the writing such as "origin, production, derivation and examination" and essentially equivalent in nature and quality. There exists thus no hierarchical system to the elements which form writing, and all contributing factors creating a text, are equal in their importance and relevance to the formation and knowledge of the written text. Derrida shows that Condillac's ideas on writing imply that:
the birth and progress of writing will observe in a range that is immediate, simple, and continuouswriting will never possess the slightest influence on either the composition or the contents of the meaning (the ideas) that it is supposed to transfer [vehicular]. (Derrida 4)
Here Derrida presents Condillac's research, whereby if writing is considered as a higher medium of communication than spoken terms, the foundation and development of the writing remains an absolute which is uncomplicated and incorruptible; this therefore means that the written form is also frequent in its meaning, as well as for the understanding of the audience.
Derrida takes concern with the notion of an absolute meaning of the written later in his article, and instead suggests that really the only 'definite' in writing is the thought of absence. For Condillac, all writing denotes an absence. There is firstly the:
lack of the addressee. One creates in order to connect something to those who find themselves absent. The absence of the receiver [destinateur], from the draw that he abandons, and which cuts itself off from him and proceeds to produce results independently of his existence and of the present reality of his motives [vouloir-dire] (Derrida 5)
The act of writing denotes an lack of the copy writer (absent during reading), and the lack of the reader (absent during the writing), meaning the writing exists independently of both reader and writer and it is yet paradoxically associated with a occurrence. The writer exists in the writing during reading because his/her intentions are made in what that are written; the reader is present at the time of writing because the article writer is going to communicate an idea in his/her writing through the act of writing.
The work of writing therefore indicates the lack of both audience and copy writer. The writing is an impartial entity which stands on its own merits after it is 'left behind' by the copy writer, yet still causes an impact on the reader; this impact is also autonomous from the genuine motives of the writer, as the understanding and interpretation rely upon the audience. This brings Derrida to the second absolute in writing, which is the lack of a definitive interpretation. As Derrida expresses:
Representation regularly supplants [supple] presenceas a continuous and homogenous reparation and modification of existence in the representation. (Derrida 5)
The presence of the copy writer is therefore denoted in the manner in which the text is received by the reader, whose understanding and interpretation of the written text are founded not in the ideas that your writer is trying to communicate, but rather in a far more useful system of understanding indicators. The systematic rules of writing are based on the knowledge of the written phrase; this is founded in dialect systems, which relating to Derrida are just understandable because of their familiarity. Although signs provide a "representation of the theory which itself represented the object recognized" (Derrida 6), it is merely the familiarity making them understandable. Derrida says:
My communication must be repeatable - iterable - in the total lack of the recipientwriting that's not structurally readable - iterable - beyond the loss of life of the addressee would not be writing. (Derrida 7)
The signs or symptoms (words) must therefore be repeatable and repeated in different circumstances to become recognized and understand in regards to what these are signifying; and moreover for Derrida what they are denoting or connoting. If the goal of writing is to mention or speak the writer's ideas, the nature of terminology and words are a representation of something which is repeatable, no matter who the audience (or article writer). Whereby writing is initially a way of communication, the bodily marks and this is will need to have iterability, citability or citationality. All writing can be copied, or must be 'copyable' in order to be classified as writing; therefore it must be open to both iteration and reiteration.
For Derrida signs or writing, are essentially infinite in their iterability, in virtually any capacity whether epistemic, grammatical or semiological; thus is situated the distinction between "written" and "oral" communication (Derrida 9). Derrida also declares that in the classical concept of writing, writing all together "bears with it a power that breaks with its framework" (Derrida 9).
Derrida continues on to present an research of spoken vocabulary/signs from Husserl. Again the iterability of spoken terms is vital to the knowledge of what is signified, denoted and comprehended by the listener, because terminology works within a
system of rules of universal grammar, not from a linguistic viewpoint but from a rational and epistemological one. (Derrida 12).
This means one must have the ability to make certain other cultural, interpersonal and epistemological sources which are recognized, and thereby permit a knowledge of words or spoken words. Derrida once again opens up his talk of writing into a wider evaluation of language, communication and ethnical relevance. For Derrida the importance is based on that 'understanding' is thereby taken "in a framework dependant on a will to know" (Derrida 12). The understanding of terms and words, whether spoken or written lie in the wider context in which these are read or listened to, rather a particular literal framework of semantic meaning.
This causes the second section of the essay where Derrida discusses the idea of truth in terms, through an study of the 'event'. Derrida's research centres on criticism of Austin's ideas of communication in conversation:
speech works only as works of communication. Conversing a power through the impetus [impulsion] of your make the performative does not have its referent outside the house of itself or any event, before and in front of itself. (Derrida 13)
Derrida implies here that John Austin's "ordinary language idea" is actually identified and restrictive, working only within a platform of definitively total 'unordinary' exclusion; as Austin shows that the "performative" mother nature of language will take precedent in communication. Austin analyses all utterances as performative, yet excludes performative talk acts which are quoted, which Derrida discovers essentially problematic. This process is restricting and restrictive, by focussing primarily on analysing the perlocution and illocution, Austin is forced to:
free the research of the performative from the expert of the reality value, from the true/fake opposition (Derrida 13).
If vocabulary or words undertake a performative dimension, which means that the utterances of what will be put within a situation (or framework) which is self-employed of either the true essential interpretation, or any bogus interpretation, of the expected meaning. The challenge for Derrida is the fact that this is of what are essentially subordinated to the real utterance or event of the talk, and/or the context within which they are uttered; which in turn produces an 'event' in the meaning as it is realized by the listener.
Derrida's criticism of Austin also boosts questions regarding the totalising element of context whereby there may be emphasis on the:
conscious occurrence of the goal of the speaking subject matter in the totality of his talk action (Derrida 14)
In the function of the conversation act the occurrence of the presenter places an importance and foregrounding to the objective of the presenter; if the goal of the presenter is visible in the talk action, then it are required to follow that the understanding of the receiver/listener becomes secondary. This brings about the inevitability that
performative communication becomes once more the communication of any intentional so this means (Derrida 14)
This poses a wider philosophical problem for Derrida in the framework of literary or dialect discourse, as Austin also discusses the criterion of what actually takes its 'successful' or 'failed' speech act with elements of "correctness and completeness" (Derrida 15). This again is restrictive and finite, and goes against Derrida's general philosophical openness and approach to literary theory.
For Derrida there is an inherent possibility in the success of the 'event' which lays in the options of including the "infelicities" in the event, and might not exactly in fact be distinguishable from a successful 'event'. For Derrida the 'failing' of the event, whether deliberate or accidental, serves a greater purpose. Derrida shows that the occurrence or potential of failing is exactly what in simple fact constitutes the function as an 'ideal'. The range for mistake and the 'negative' impact on the event, whilst it could ruin the idealistic method of the function, in fact acts the paradoxical reason for making the function ideal; by in its very character in introducing an element of danger to the function. An ideal or ideal event would therefore produce an element of threat, which is avoided. Although Austin cites theatrical events, recitations of poetry or books as examples of felicitous speech occasions, as Derrida highlights there continues to be scope for mistakes or mistakes in the utterances.
Derrida ends the section on "Event" by firmly taking an opposing view to Austin, in the similar vein to his opposition to Condillac's views and refers to the itability of the sign in general. Derrida areas that speech utterances, or situations come with an itability. Austin's view of the ""relative purity" of performatives" (Derrida 18) must be studied not:
in opposition to citationality or iterability, but in opposition to other varieties of iteration within an over-all iterability which takes its violation of the allegedly thorough purity of each event of discourse or every talk function. (Derrida 18)
Derrida's take on the function of the talk act is that there surely is a history to the iterability or possible repetition of the utterance, which means that each utterance or conversation act must be taken in the framework in which it is stated. This has an inevitable influence on the procedure or understanding of the words which are spoken and what they indicate. Unlike Austin's view that emphasise understanding of "finished. and the notion" (Derrida 18), Derrida stresses that we must consider that the:
motivations, indestructible necessity and systematic results would be at the mercy of analysis (Derrida 18)
Here the value of framework is fore grounded in relation to the event and it is at the mercy of the same "metaphysical origins" (Derrida 18) which Austin appropriates to the event. Derrida concludes by recommending that in order to understand context, the conscious motives of the speaker (and receiver) must be certain. However consciousness is not a definite and is open to debate and discourse. Therefore although utterances may be specific, the specificity is not exclusive to presenting an complete opposite or "contrary" influence on the listener and therefore the function is open to further metaphysical controversy.
In the final section of the article Derrida focuses on "Signature'" as an signal and way of measuring the presence of the writer or publisher. The personal denotes the copy writer as the source of the written text, or the loudspeaker of the utterance, and they hold the form of rules for the sign or words which are spoken or written. Derrida illustrates that the likelihood and inevitability of repetition and iterability is essential to the signature; as with earlier discussions on the type of signs and language.
By its very nature the personal is iterable, as it must be, and it is always repeated in order to be recognisable as a personal specific to the writer. As Derrida highlights although a signature is singular to the author, just as before paradoxically, there is an inescapable plurality to its creation; in that it is repeated time and again as an indicator of the presence of the article writer. Derrida refers back again to earlier arguments proclaiming that:
By explanation, a written signature implies the genuine or empirical nonpresence of the signer. (Derrida 20)
The signature thereby signifies the absence of the article writer, while at the same time denoting the occurrence of the signer before, and can be taken as a 'alternative' for their physical existence; it also means the presence of the audience in the foreseeable future or present.
Derrida also alternatively playfully adds his own personal to the end of the essay, as a performative example of an event. As visitors we are made aware that Derrida will need to have at some point made the personal to the newspaper, however the imprinted duplicate of the signature before us is not the 'original' or 'real' make/sign made by Derrida, it is an repeated printed copy of the same. This function highlights important elements of Derrida's quarrels from the article, as to the characteristics of iterability, repetition, lack and context. The communication of Derrida's ideas in the preceding article are somehow signified as more genuine, or genuine because he has positioned his signature by the end of the essay and located a symbol/sign of 'authenticity' to the essay. Derrida's conclusions to the article tie up in with this notion, for the reason that while dialect can be philosophised in an 'ordinary' manner, as a means of communicating semantics, there is always an actual and infinite possibility to other factors such as presence, knowledge, representation, and truth. For Derrida the practice of communication and the spoken phrase or writing must be inclusive of these elements for a wording to be comprehended or communicated in its entirety.
Derrida's stylistic occurrence is evident in the title and structure of the article, in the utilization of questions, often at times rhetorical, and the proposition of paradoxes. The essay is actually structured in the change order of the title "Signature Event Context": 'Framework' is mentioned first in display of Condillac's ideas, accompanied by Austin's arguments on the 'Event', and the essay ends with Derrida's thoughts on 'Personal'. This using the order of the elements which Derrida is talking about is relatively typical of Derrida's stylistic and consciously 'lively' approach to writing.
At times the dialect and style is analogous to the spoken phrase or a conversation; which again is self-referential to the proper execution of the text, as it was in the beginning a spoken words/utterance. The proper execution and composition of the essay reiterates the ideas and arguments that Derrida presents. The article is organized in a reasonably accessible yet formal manner whereby Derrida at times breaks arguments or ideas down into stated or numbered sections. Although the difficulty of the ideas and principles shown are perhaps more complicated than the stylistic form of the written language.
Derrida repeats certain details and arguments, by delivering his ideas in a manner which reiterates the substance of his arguments, and by repeating the same central arguments in a just a bit altered form. He uses repetition of the arguments to make the ideas that he's showing familiar and understandable to the audience, which is his basic approach to the function and knowledge of language, symptoms and words - the more familiar we become with words, the easier they are to understand in their 'true' meaning. The meaning lies in the repetition and iterability not only of the words, but also in the principles and ideas which lay beneath the semantics of the phrases and content of the essay. Derrida's quarrels are therefore communicated to us as visitors when we read and understand the written text in the framework of the structure of the article, and experience the text as part of a wider cultural discourse.