A Vocabulary for “Plato’s Pharmacy” – English 364, May 23, 2008 Instruct or: Gre g Po lako ff Notes: The definitions and comments that appear in brackets are mine; the others are from the Norton Anthology. The primary source of the additional Greek definitions I provide is the Perseus online dictionary (link on weblog). Transliterations of Greek words varies significantly from text to text. aiskhron alêtheia agathon aiskhrôs akoé analogon anamnesia autognosis autoscopy biblia ekgonos eikona ergon Delphikon gramma diacritical différance doxa dunamis eidos graphein horômena hupomnêmata hypomnesia hypomnêmis kâlos khairein kibdêlon logographer infamy [from shame]. truth [Derrida's interpretation of this word is coloured by his extensive reading of Heidegger, who emphasizes the dynamic nature of truth--that it represents a constant process of revealing and disclosure]. good--of people and things, serviceable, morally good. shamefully [with baseness and infamy]. something heard. analogue. recollection. self-knowledge. self-examination [refers to the self-examination of one's eye. this term originates from the word autoscope, which is a Renaissance invention to examine one's own eye--c.f. entry for macula below] written texts. born of, sprung from, used for "offspring," "child," "son" and "daughter.” image. works––or war, industry, deeds, etc. Delphic inscription [...] "know thyself" [the question of whether or not it is possible to "know thyself" is an important theme in the texts of Nietzsche, Heidegger, Lacan, and various other authors that we will explore] differentiating, separating. [capable of discerning and distinguishing things. This word also refers to "diacritical marks" that are in various language, and by linguists, to indicate variations in pronunciation. The accent (the hat) over the Greek letters, that indicates a long vowel, is a diacritical mark] Probably Derrida's most famous neologism. It is a "noun-verb" that is a play upon the words différer (verb: to differ and defer), différant (noun: the condition of differing, or of differing), and différEnce (differnce––notice the E in this word). This word defies our cognition of the sensible and the intelligible (neither a noumenon nor phenomenon). This word is indistinguishable to the ear from the word difference. notion, opinion, external appearance. power, that which is dynamic––might, strength, action of medicines, function, force of word, meaning, value of money, phonetic value of letters, magical substance, the exponential power of numbers. idea or "form" as discussed in Plato's writings. to write; writing. visible. monuments. remembrance via reminding. a reminding. beautifully. to rejoice at, to welcome, to bid farewell; or, rejoicing at, welcoming, bidding farewell. that which is falsified, adulterated, mendacious, deceptive, equivocal (page 1845). one who transcribes the spoken word––a “writer.” logos macula mathêma metastatic medusée mnême mnesic mythologemes nooumena onta paidia patêr peithô pharmakeia/pharmakon philosopheme phusis psuche sêmainei sumplokê sophia sophists sous rature sungrammata tekhnê tokous topoi tupoi zoôn that which is spoken, language, talk, argument, speech, discourse, conversation, narrative, opinion, reason, plea, etc.--these definitions represent usages over a long period of time. Many interpret logos as the written word. Derrida attempts to draw attention to these contradictions. spot, stain (Latin). Note that in modern usage this word is also related to the "eye"--see entry for autoscopy above. Macula specifically refers to a spot or stain on the eye, or a corneal opacity--c.f. "macular degeneration." discipline. the movement or transportation of disease producing agents from one part of a body to another, c.f. metastasize. to be “stoned” (quite literally)—past tense of “meduser,” a verb based on the name of the mythological figure Medusa. One look from her, and you turn to stone! memory. having to do with memory. constituent elements of mythology. intelligible [c.f. nounmena--in Kantian philosophy, this term refers to "the thing in itself" that is inaccessible to experience, but can be intuited through the use of our various cognitive faculties]. Beings. Ontology is s branch of philosophy that examines the nature of "being." Heidegger distinguishes the "ontic"––the description of "being" from a static perspective––and the "ontological," the description of "being" as dynamic and constantly evolving process (c.f. alêtheia). For Heidegger, humans actively participate in the act of “being.” All things “are,” yet only human beings are able to actively inquire into the nature of “being.” Heidegger describes “being” as an active “questioning.” For further information on these concepts, I recommend that you read the introduction to Being and Time––a major influence on Derrida. game. father, author, epithet for various gods. persuasion. a common noun signifying the administration of the pharmakon, the drug; the medicine and /or poison [Derrida 1835] Constituent element of philosophy. nature; natural world [rel. to "physics"]. soul. signify. intertwining; rhetorical interweaving. instruction. those who taught rhetoric and devised arguments for money; the term later became synonymous with fallacious reasoners. an erasure. written compositions. skills, craft, method of doing--in both the "technological" and "artistic" sense. Derrida is likely drawing upon his experience with Heidegger here as well--see note for alêtheia above. bringing forth, childbirth, produce, and a metaphor for monetary interest. places, topics. types. inflected form of zoôs: alive, living.