Posted: September 3rd, 2013
Signature Event Context
In his article, Signature Events Context, Jacques Derrida expounds on the signature as part of the larger communication topic. The reading’s heading attracts some attention as one begins to read. Since there are no punctuation marks such as commas, the heading brings ambiguity to the context. However, at a glance, the heading may be suggesting that there is a relationship between the three words. In other words, there is a relationship between, the signature, an event and the context. In elaborating further, the signature, which is the written document in the signer’s absentia, of an event, which is the paper’s presentation, in its context, which is an association’s meeting.
Derrida discusses a few issues regarding the signature. In his article, he feels that if a signature is to exemplify the functional or readability qualities, it must have an imitable and repeatable form. It must not have any attachment from the singular and present production’s intention. This is the foundation of the reading’s content. Although he mostly dwells on the signatures, this point not only applies to anything that can be categorized as readable. The author also criticizes the popular belief that there is an assumption concerning the written language’s derivative and secondary nature. In a summary, Derrida points out that the repetitiveness of content makes up the foundation of a possibility. If this were not present, utterances would not be present. This is important as it explains and performs what implications trail from the implications of the foundation.
At the beginning of the reading, Derrida start with a rhetorical question, “is it certain that the word communication corresponds to a concept that is unique, univocal, rigorously controllable and transmittable: in a word, communication?” (1). This rhetorical question evokes an obvious answer, which might be negative or affirmative. Depending on the answer given by the reader as he/she continues to read the rest of the content, the author allows the reader to open up his thoughts in order to avoid limiting himself to certain concepts, ideas or thoughts. As the author continues to write about the power of writing as opposed to the traditional perception, the reader is able to comprehend the context in the event of a signature where the author places more emphasis.
In a real life example, students are usually given contexts in order to orient them when reading contents that are easy to comprehend. In this case, Derrida shows that tutors, or the people issuing the text, should focus beyond the context on the queries regarding the events, the discourses and the texts. These are more important than reading the texts.
Derrida was greatly influenced by philosophers such as Burke, Gorgias and Nietzsche. However, Friedrich Nietzsche was the most influential as far as Derrida’s works were concerned. Derrida greatly read Nietzsche works as he grew up. Nietzsche’s works most dwelt on aphorism, irony, metaphors, science, philosophy, contemporary culture, morality and religion amongst other popular and unpopular topics. This is why Derrida cultivated a habit of writing issues concerning the contemporary culture such as communication topics as seen in this reading. According to the Derrida, the society would be more advanced if it changed its perspective to some issues that were considered as “truth” yet they could be interpreted differently. In this particular reading, Derrida implies that our contextual sense is reliant on a state that surpasses all contexts, and it questions the context value, its meaning and cohesion.
Bizzell, Patricia & Bruce Herzberg. The rhetorical tradition: Readings from classical times to the present. 2nd edition. Boston: Bedford/St, 2001. Print.
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