In a conversation in 1994 Derrida made a retrospectively explanatory statement that for all posterity will re-mark his entire oeuvre, a statement as unveiling, as programmatic, as it was confessing: food for foes, but largely unnoticed by friends. For foes it revealed how ‘dangerous’ or ‘confused’ Derrida really was—obscurantisme terroriste, as Michel Foucault once had himself utter; for friends, in the degree to which it was given notice at all, it would risk marginalizing hundreds of interpretations already sanctioned and canonized by the proper archeions. Still it has not attracted the interest it deserves. I cite:
“The virus is in part a parasite that destroys, that introduces disorder into communication,” alas! Paul De Man’s warning that “the impossibility of reading should not be taken too lightly,” is more than fit. What had not already Derrida said about ‘communication’ in Signature, Event, Context? We are still Kantians with a view to ‘communication.’ Newton’s ideological gravitational force made Kant fall, and the naive question asked: “What are the conditions of possibility of knowledge?” Still not daring to critically question the mythological horizon of our age old metaphysical tradition, we continue in the vein of Kant: “What are the conditions of possibility of communication?” How dare one call oneself a thinker without scrupulously inquiring after conditions of impossibility? And this is indeed what Derrida does. In his entire oeuvre, in fact.