Critical Inquiry (The Late Derrida, 33:2) by W.J.T. Mitchell

By W.J.T. Mitchell

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Ever replies in its own name. ” [“A,” p. 379] One would thus also have to try to imagine a world without animals, the world without the animals? Being after, being alongside, being near [pre`s] would appear as different modes of being, indeed of being-with. With the animal. But . . ” In any case they express a certain order of the being-huddled-together [eˆtre-serre´] . . the being-pressed, the being-with as being strictly attached, bound, enchained, being-underpressure, compressed, impressed, repressed, pressed-against according to the stronger or weaker stricture of what always remains pressing.

You see yourself seen for a long time, the time it takes to be seen and not just glimpsed. You see yourself seen by a look that does not turn away. Cat is neither waiting for food nor lying in wait. Cat looks at you with a love that doesn’t judge you, doesn’t ask you, leaves you free. ) Cat gives you all the time. Cat lives. Cat takes the time to live. Cat gives time to live. Cat wants if you want. Does not obligate you. Cat has the absolute eye. Like god. Cat knows how to love well. Cat introduces to the matter of love, naturally.

Every man is worth every other man, every being is worth every other being; this is a revolutionary, ideal, divine, and awesome position. But in general we fall into the category of what Pascal despises: Whoever would have full knowledge of human vanity has only to consider the causes and effects of love. The cause is a je ne sais quoi (Corneille), and the effects are frightful. This je ne sais quoi, a thing so slight that one cannot recognize it, moves the entire earth, princes, armies, the whole world.

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