Monday, June 26, 2006
(1:06 PM) | Adam Kotsko:
Open Source ScholarshipRecent events have made me a big believer in the open distribution of scholarly work. Although a desire to keep one's writings or translations private is understandable in light of the mechanisms of professional academic advancement, one can equally make the argument that "playing the game" makes one complicit in a system that all too often privileges the ego of established academics over against the work of younger scholars still trying to make a name for themselves.
Accordingly, I have decided to make available to the general public a previously untranslated essay by Jacques Derrida, whose title I have translated as "Literature in Secret: An Impossible Filiation." Although I admittedly lack official credentials as a translator of French -- and apparently will continue to lack them for the indefinite future, sadly contrary to my expectations -- I assure everyone not only that the greatest care has been taken in the preparation of this translation and the accompanying notes, but that its fundamental soundness has been attested to by a well-known translator of Derrida's work and by a native speaker of French. This is a somewhat updated version of the translation that I originally submitted as part of my masters thesis (accepted "with distinction") at the Chicago Theological Seminary; that thesis, consisting of a translation with accompanying commentary, is currently on file at that institution's Hammond Library.
I encourage all interested parties to read this text, to treasure it in your heart, to save it on your hard drives and web spaces, and to distribute it as widely (but also as prudently) as possible.