File(s) under permanent embargo
Reason: Restricted by author. A copy can be supplied under Section 51 (2) of the Australian Copyright Act 1968 by submitting a document delivery request through your library, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Beyond Discipline(s): The Thought of the Archive in Foucault and Derrida
In order to distinguish essays and pre-prints from academic theses, we have a separate category. These are often much longer text based documents than a paper.
But to succeed as a corrective, the thought of the archive needs not only depart from but also remain conversant with this philsophical tradition. Thus, I argue, in both cases, however different otherwise, ‘the archive’ marks a critical transformation of Kantian boundary conceptuality (Grenzbegriff) from a tool for the necessary (architectonic) integration of natural scientific orders, into a paradoxical logic of transdisciplinarity. My argument proceeds in two main steps: a brief reconstruction of Kant’s doctrine of boundary conceptuality and its post-Kantian fates, followed by an exposition of Foucault’s early, archaeological concept of ‘archive’ as a Neo-Kantian (methodological and anti-metaphysical) transformation of boundary conceptuality, more specifically as an ideal-typical concept in the style of Weber. It concludes with a discussion of Derrida’s concept of ‘archive’ (especially in Archive Fever) as a transformation of Kant’s Grenzbegriff in the opposite direction (‘transcendental yet speculative'), which—I show—occurs through an aporetic ‘raising of the stakes’ that implicitly problematizes Foucault’s ideal-typical concept. Superficially, everything separates the two concepts: Foucault’s names the historically contingent (yet non-arbitrary) organization of an ideal-typical space of knowledge and the sedimentation of relatively stable and stultifying epistemic orders; while Derrida’s questions the very form of the ‘problem’ (or ‘task’ for thought) which is at the heart of Kant’s boundary conceptuality and Foucault’s transformation thereof. The only thought, I argue, capacious enough to let us think this difference, which is nevertheless not a differend, is Kant’s Grenzbegriff.