I have been doing an excellent free Open Learning Course by Monash University professor in French studies Christopher Watkin on the topic "Postmodernism and the Bible: Understanding Derrida and Foucault". Great to have this kind of Christian academic thinking happening in Australia!
Here are a string of half-thoughts that I've tweeted out as I've gone through the course material:
- People with complex & impenetrable theological theories say "You haven't understood me properly." This seems like a kind of gaslighting: They say one thing, then deny they meant it and call you foolish.... until eventually you doubt your own mind and submit to them.
- Pondering the irony of how structuralism/post-structuralism removed confidence in language... but boosted confidence in knowing motives/fantasies of speakers.
- Derrida asserts that a philosophy of ‘différance’ is not a ‘negative theology’. I’m not convinced. Seems like it to me.
- A Christian philosopher's summary of Derrida's ethics. He doesn't say 'It's all relative'
- From my lecturer: the ethics of Derrida & Levinas is seeking how a philosophy without God can make sure the Holocaust can never happen again.
- The irony of postmodern politics: You accept that hidden power structures shape society beyond conscious human intention... so then you try to police those hidden power structures with conscious human intention.
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