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Abstract

Although much has been written about the so-called political, ethical and religious turns in the thinking of Jacques Derrida, few have noticed that his late writings were marked by what we could tentatively call a “zoological turn.” This is surprising given that in The Animal That Therefore I Am Derrida clearly stated that the question as to what distinguishes the human from the animal has for him always been the most important question of philosophy. This essay will attempt to offer a preliminary exploration of this still largely uncharted aspect of Derrida’s thought. Starting from a brief overview of Derrida’s most important writings on the question of the animal, it will be argued that his decision to write an entire book on this issue was largely motivated by his eagerness to settle a discussion with one of his pupils, the French theorist of technology Bernard Stiegler.

DOI

10.15368/bts.2011v14n1.3

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