My tribute to Derrida’s work: “Remembering Derrida: “A Language of Friendship”

Jacques Derrida died on 8 October 2004 in Paris and this year marks 10 years anniversary of his death. This special issue celebrates one of his most recurrent themes – a subject matter of politics of friendship. For Derrida, the theme of the politics of friendship remains an unfinished affair and a theme remains the most important force of good in life: “To have a friend: to keep him. To follow him with your eyes. Still to see him when he is no longer there and to try to know, listen to, or read him when you know that you will see him no longer-and that is to cry’. (Derrida, 2001, p.). To Derrida, friendship is also an obligation, a responsibility: “I have more than one, and more than one ‘brother’ of more than one sex, and I love having more than one, each time unique, of whom and to whom, in more than one language, across quite a few boundaries, I am bound by a conjuration and so many unuttered oaths” (Derrida, 1997, p.305). In his treatise, The Politics of Friendship (1997), Derrida asks a reader an important question: ’’Where, then, is the question? Here it is: I have never stopped asking myself, I request that it be asked, what is meant when one says ‘brother’, when someone is called ‘brother’. And when the humanity of man, as much as the alterity of the other, is thus resumed and subsumed. And the infinite price of friendship. I have wondered, and I ask, what one wants to say whereas one does not want to say, one knows that one should not say, because one knows, thought so much obscurity, whence it comes and where this profoundly obscure language has led in the past. Up until now. I am wondering, that’s all, and request that it be asked, what the implicit politics of this language is. For always, and today more than ever. What is the political impact of this language and range of this chosen word, among other possible words, even-and especially-if the choice is not deliberate?’’ (Derrida, 1997, p.305). Derrida’s writing remains as contemporaneous as ever. Storytelling offers a way of translating the untranslatable in practical terms. Stories speak on behalf of Other, their unspoken and marginalised voices, of their pain or suffering, sorrow or happiness, or exclusion from society. Authors’ own experiences of friendship and methods offer three different possibilities: a communal friendship and ethnographic storytelling; academic friendship and quantum storytelling; and moments of friendship and entrepreneurial storytelling.

A special issue can be found at:

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