Last Updated on Monday, 02 April 2012 15:37 Written by Robert M. Price Monday, 05 December 2011 03:04
Jacques Derrida, father of Deconstruction, aptly said that people either love or hate Deconstruction. Once I was teaching a class on Postmodernism and Deconstruction, and one fellow, a retired professor if I recall correctly, was so outraged and incensed by what I was saying that he just could not control himself! He continually interrupted me to sound off about how outrageous Deconstruction’s methods and claims were! I had to ask him to be patient and hear me out. What I was really asking him was to try to be teachable, to stop defending himself against an idea that struck him as counter-intuitive. Give it a chance, try to understand it as its advocates do. If you still disagree, then you will at least be in a position to level an informed critique.
Now I am asking you to do me the same favor. Many readers have found Donald R. Burleson’s and my Deconstructive analyses to be unpalatable. Initially I reacted the same way to Don’s. But eventually I began to realize there had to be a method in this seeming madness. Burleson was no dummy! He must see something in it, so I started reading up on the subject—and I got converted! In what follows, please try to be open-minded.
Don’s “Identity and Alterity in Henry James's ‘The Jolly Corner’” first appeared in Studies in Weird Fiction #8 (February 1990). His “Arthur Machen's ‘N’ as Allegory of Reading” first appeared in Studies in Weird Fiction #7 (Spring 1990). My own “The Criticism of Azathoth” appeared (where else?) in Crypt of Cthulhu # 80 (Eastertide 1992).