Laurence Simmons is Head of the Department of Film, Television and Media Studies at The University of Auckland. He is the co-editor of Derrida Downunder (2001), Baudrillard West of the Dateline (2003) and From Z to A: Zizek at the Antipodes (2005) and published a book on Freud’s papers on art and aesthetics and his relationship with Italy entitled Freud’s Italian Journey in 2006. His latest book, Tuhituhi (2011), is on the painter William Hodges who journeyed with Captain James Cook on his second voyage to the South Pacific.
- "That is, the pure text cannot erase traces of dialogic ambiguity constituted in and constituting any pure text."
- "Derrida reproduces Condillac’s own note against plagiarisers from the Essay on the Origin of Human Knowledge: I ought to warn that many writers have copied this Essay, for it could be thought that I myself copied them by writing on the art of thinking [Derrida adds an interesting aside here: how do you fight the form of plagiarism that looks like you are plagiarising those who have in fact plagiarised you?]."
- "Derrida’s event, événement, comes from the Latin evenire, ‘to come out from’."
- "‘The space of literature’, he says, ‘is not only that of an instituted fiction but also a fictive institution which in principle allows one to say everything […] The law of literature tends, in principle, to defy or lift the law […] It is an institution which tends to overflow the institution’."
- "Derrida thus identifies literature with the freedom of speech, the unconditional right to say everything and to disclaim responsibility for what is said, that is the linchpin of Western democracy: What we call literature … implies that license is given to the writer to say everything he wants or everything he can, while remaining shielded, safe from all censorship, be it religious or political [….] This duty of irresponsibility, of refusing to reply for one’s thought or writing to constituted powers, is perhaps the highest form of responsibility."
- "The ‘university without condition’ does not and cannot give the answer; it can affirm answers but it can never prove them."
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- "Thus the institution remains caught undecidably between life and death; the institution lives in a kind of constitutive dissension — although, in the case of ‘the university without condition’, this indelible scar of the institution’s institution leads, as Derrida argues, to the chance of affirmation and ultimately to the possibility of life over, after or in death: in other words, survival."
- "and suggest that plagiarism and the imposition of it within the domain of specialised knowledges, or the academy, should be understood as the very structure of the field in which university discourse is produced and circulated."
- "Here and in another essay entitled ‘Unconditionality or Sovereignty: The University at the Borders of Europe’, he gives the name ‘unconditionality’ to the research university’s hypothetical freedom from outside interference, to the privilege to put everything in question, even to put in question the right to put everything in question."